1. FEDERAL OVERSIGHT – 2. POLICE BASHING – 3. SERGEANT PROMOTIONS
1. FEDERAL OVERSIGHT
On 12/2/15, the day after Illinois Attorney General Madigan called for a Department of Justice (DOJ) investigation into the Chicago Police Department, I had a conversation with National FOP President Chuck Canterbury, who began to make the necessary arrangements for us to meet with representatives of the Department of Justice. Like many of you, prior to US Attorney General Lynch’s 12/7/15 announcement, we were 100% convinced that it was only a matter of time before the DOJ came to Chicago. In order to be in the best possible position to protect the Membership and the Lodge, it was decided for us to be proactive and to learn as much as we could, as quickly as we could, with regards to the DOJ’s intentions.
With the assistance of the National FOP and prior to US Attorney General Lynch’s 12/7/15 announcement, we were able to have a meeting arranged to take place in Washington, DC on 12/9/15. National FOP President Chuck Canterbury, National FOP Executive Director James Pasco, seven lawyers from the DOJ and I spent nearly an hour addressing a wide array of matters. A few of the topics that were discussed included (but were not limited to) the DOJ's process as it relates to these types of investigations, several specific concerns that our rank-and-file had voiced, as well as permitting the Lodge to play an active role as things evolve. The meeting went better than anticipated and all parties now have a better sense of what to expect.
Many more particulars of what transpired between the parties at the DC meeting (such as the Contract remaining intact) will be shared at the Unit Rep event this Monday (on 12/14/15 at 6:00 PM), as well as at the General Membership Meeting on Tuesday (12/15/15 at 7:00 PM). There is also a plan in progress to put together a short video on the Lodge’s “Members Only” section of the web page.
2. POLICE BASHING
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! It is about time that all of those in political office, from the fifth floor to the council chamber, end the finger pointing, the blame and the over the top anti-police rhetoric. In a very short time, the Lodge has gone from being sought after for political endorsement, to the three-headed monster nightmares are made of. How quickly (and easily) it is to turn on the FOP, who were lauded for our organizational leadership and professionalism shortly after our Contract was ratified. The recent political detestation of Police Officers is a great lesson for all of us learned on how quickly politics can cause someone to go from friend to fiend.
Once again and in order to address some of the concerns on where the FOP has been and what we are doing to address this latest crisis, I wanted to take a quick moment to share the following information concerning my personal involvement. We have been constantly speaking out against the anti-police movement (and continue to do so). For the past few weeks, I spoke with so many media outlets that the list is actually too long to include here. But, we have been on nearly every local television station, in several of our local (and even national) print media. We have met with CNN, Reuters, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and even the BBC. At the time of this writing, we are making arrangements to schedule an appearance on WTTW’s Chicago Tonight program, also on Monday (12/14/15), due to air at 7:00 PM.
You can be sure that we will continue to address these and any other issues that come our way. We are also always available at the Lodge office or on-line via email. Never think that you cannot reach out to ask us (me) directly…any day, any time. However, we will not give credence to the loudest voices looking for the Lodge to either engage with the dissidents, nor will we try to out-scream the screamers. We are not them and we will not act like them.
3. SERGEANT PROMOTIONS
Lastly, we received a call from the Department concerning our challenge to the recent Sergeant promotions where the incessant argument concerning merit percentages resurrected itself once again. A recent promotional group contained 100% merit; no one off of the list was called. As you might recall, the Lodge went into court to stop this particular list. The Judge allowed the class to proceed, but mentioned that if the Lodge was successful in our argument, any future award could include back pay and back seniority.
The call we received from the Department informed the Lodge that 29 additional officers, from rank order, have been promoted as part of the group. Therefore, it appears the Department agreed with the arguments raised in the litigation and have placed all those impacted officers in the same position they would have been had the Department followed the original plan. The Lodge needed to make sure that the Department complied with the procedures it published to the membership—now it did!
-President Dean Angelo, Sr.