The Chicago Fraternal Order of Police on Wednesday signaled their displeasure in a symbolic no-confidence vote targeting Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Police Supt. David Brown and First Deputy Supt. Eric Carter.
FOP President John Catanzara in a video about the vote pointed to the department nixing the St. Jude Memorial March for fallen officers for the second year straight, and to issues regarding long working hours demanded of police officers.
“And it was a slap in the face to every department member, especially the Gold Star Families who have paid the ultimate sacrifice, and deserve that respect annually, period, no excuses,” Catanzara said regarding the parade cancellation. "If they come up with more in the future we will certainly continue to hold our march like we did this year if we need to on our own," he said.
"The second part of the no-confidence vote was the working conditions for our officers for the better part of a year now and a lack of consideration for family life, social life, whatever the case may be. Too many of our officers have worked extended hours, not voluntarily, but forced. And the compensation, for starters, is the same whether you volunteer or not. That makes absolutely no sense, but the department doesn't give a damn," he said.
Mayor Lightfoot brushed off the vote on Thursday: "Frankly, getting a vote of no confidence from that guy is a badge of honor accepted,” she said regarding Catanzara, CBS Chicago reported.
The outlet reported that the mayor pointed out that the FOP's employment contract expired almost four years back and that Lightfoot accused Catanzara of refusing to engage in bargaining with the city.
"The current administration of the FOP has decided that the best strategy is to do nothing. Why? Because they don’t want to face the realities that we are in. We’ve got monumental reforms and accountability in the supervisors’ contracts. The state law has changes to make sure that there’s more reform and accountability, but what does the FOP president say? He says that his strategy is to do nothing, to drag it out, so that he doesn’t have to face the reality," Lightfoot said, according to the outlet.