The King County Labor Council, an affiliate of the AFL-CIO, confirmed Wednesday that the Seattle Police Officers Guild (SPOG) would be removed from its ranks, ousting the association that bargains on behalf of 1,300 Seattle cops.Reason
Good. Police unions exist to protect officers at all costs, often to the detriment of the public that they’ve sworn to protect.
I have always maintained that as a police officer my job was to investigate organized criminal activity, not pay dues to it. I have no use for unions.
Unions may have served a purpose at one time. But that no longer holds true. The same can be said for civil service. Both are like taxes, once imposed they never seem to go away.
Union contracts between employees and and employers set out to define acceptable behaviors for both sides. Deviation from accepted norms could then be litigated, as a contract dispute. This served when there was no applicable state or federal law. That is no longer the case.
Civil service rules did much the same thing, without a contract or collective bargaining agreement. Combine civil service with unionization and collective bargaining and civil service becomes redundant. Union representatives and employers are then free to modify and in effect violate civil service via contract, when it suits their purpose.
This isn’t your grandfather’s workplace. In the modern workplace employees have a wide variety of state and federal laws that dictate hiring, firing, discipline, promotion and acceptable standards.
In many large cities with a strong union presence, the union leadership is supposed to be run by cops. If that means that the city gives them a paycheck I guess that is true. Oftentimes though, Union leadership is a full time job. These guys stopped being cops and are full time union thugs. The badge is nothing more than a free pass to get in the back door of the police station.
Years ago the union president in San Antonio (SAPOA) was busy running with the big dogs of CLEAT, a statewide police union. He wasn’t as practiced as they were in raking off union funds for personal use and soon ran afoul of the Feds.
He ended his police and union career with an extended vacation, courtesy of the United States Attorney. Club Fed in Big Spring, Texas is not a garden spot.
FCI Bastrop would have been more convenient because it is on the way to Austin. Be that as it may, SAPOA officials armed with union ledgers made regular trips to Big Spring FCI.
The inmate may have been an ex-cop, ex-president, and ex-lobbyist. He was still a union man. A little thing like a felony conviction didn’t bother the SAPOA. Since he was above ground I guess that put him a step above Jimmy Hoffa.
It seems that union reps evolve from being advocates for better working conditions for the rank and file. To advocates for a lifestyle to which they have become accustomed.
It is simplistic to blame police unions for all the ills, real and imagined, that cities face. Critics claim that collective bargaining has saddled cities with pension debts that they will never be able to meet.
I can see two possibilities in play. First, nobody on the city negotiation team is able to operate a calculator. Second, in the interest of parity, any increase in police pay and benefits is an argument for an increase in pay and benefits for the city negotiation team. The only people not represented at the negotiation table are the taxpayers.
The inability to remove bad cops is a rallying cry against police unions. This ignores a variety of other explanations, none of which involve the union, collective bargaining and sometimes cops.
I spent fifteen years assigned to a narcotics task force. I was assigned there because I threatened the Chief’s #1 hey-boy. He was the perpetrator of a scheme that subjected the police department and city to massive liability. Chief got the memo at 9 am by 10 am I was assigned to the narcotics task force. The hey-boy got promoted.
More often than not the reason for inaction was not to protect the miscreant. Over the years I have run into numerous bad reasons for inaction. From a Mayor, “It’s just so inconvenient to pursue this matter…” From DEA, “It sucks to be them.” Usually it was a variation of bureaucratic pass the buck, let the stink settle on somebody else.
Internal affairs is great for investigating cops for saying “motherfucker” at inappropriate times. Sending cops to prison, not so much. I was a narc for fifteen years,
According to popular culture I was damaged goods. One step away from being a crook. All of that aside, I sent four cops to club fed. I had no faith that their departments or the District Attorney would deal with the matter. One of those cops was a fellow investigator.
He was two years into a twelve year sentence when he got a letter from the state agency responsible for licensing police officers. In light of his felony conviction, they asked him if he would mind very much surrendering his peace officer license.
Part of the liberal enlightenment was to foist the concept of arbitration into police disciplinary actions. Agencies found themselves confronted with arbitrators who were unable to distinguish between cops and garbage collectors.
A department in Massachusetts attempted to fire an officer for possessing marijuana. This was prior to legalization or decriminalization. The arbitrator ruled that the city must reinstate the officer. After all, he was off duty.
Massachusetts has a law that makes it illegal for police and fire fighters to smoke anything, anywhere. The city modified their complaint, alleging that he smoked marijuana. The firing was then upheld.
I have a modest proposal for weeding out unsuitable police officers. At first glance it seems extreme. However, I think it would identify those officers that have the intelligence and commitment to do the job. It would eliminate stupid cops and the office pogues that inhabit the inner confines of any police station.
It is simple. In order to sign up for a promotion examination, the candidate must toss a pair of bloody ears on the table. No ears, no test, no promotion. No interfering with operations with silly theories that don’t work.
The stupid cops may collect ears. But they won’t do it right. Their actions will remove them from the pool of potential candidates. The pogues will be eliminated because it is unlikely that they will have the ability to collect ears from their hiding place in the basement.
Okay, I know it may be tough on the turds out there. But it is not like we are going to run out of them.
I guess I’ll never be a police chief.