Boston’s police union is airing radio commercials accusing Mayor Thomas Menino of endangering public safety by “slashing the police force.” Boston police are “in danger. So are you,” the voice says in the 60-second ad. “You know, fewer police means more crime. Less protection for your family. . . . Without police, children are in danger. Homes are at risk,” says the Boston Globe.
The Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association wroted the ad, laden with comments connecting a reduction of officers with a rise in crime, as a tactic to pressure Menino over labor negotiations and to attack his proposed spending cuts, which include thinning the department through early retirement offers.
Menino will face about 650 police union members vowing to confront him every day, all day, anywhere they find him. Crews have been organized to stake out City Hall, carrying picket signs at the building’s rear entrance, which Menino prefers to use without fanfare. Others will await Menino at his public appearances. The elaborate mobilization involves half of union membership and is designed, as the BPPA secretary, Robert Boyle, put it, to “get under his skin.”
The radio ad suggests Menino is holding back on money he could apply to new labor contracts. Menino has held a hard line on raises for city workers, citing the reduction in state aid that forced him to propose $73 million in spending cuts. The ad, however, insists that the city is “flush with cash, nearly $400 million.”