Boston Cops Complain About Hiring Outside Forces

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The union representing hundreds of high-ranking Boston police officers has complained to the police labor relations board that Commissioner Kathleen O’Toole set an unacceptable precedent during playoff and World Series games at Fenway Park by hiring outside police agencies to help control crowds, instead of letting Boston officers do the work, says the Boston Globe. After the celebration over the Red Sox victory over the New York Yankees for American League championship, during which a police officer fired a pepperball gun that killed a college student, O’Toole moved to bolster security for the World Series. She invited hundreds of extra officers suburban police departments, the State Police, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority police, and the Department of Correction. “It’s our work, it’s our streets,” said Mark Parolin of the Boston Police Superior Officers Federation. “Before they go to outside departments, they should have every cop in the city of Boston working.”

O’Toole’s sought outside help after the Boston Police Department had drastically exceeded its overtime budget for the current fiscal year. Last month, the Globe reported that O’Toole told her command staff to cut back on overtime. Parolin acknowledged the city’s budget problems, but said that if overtime isn’t affordable, the city should hire more officers. “It’s been a big year for us: the Super Bowl, the murder rate has increased — they’ve needed to drive that down, the Democratic National Convetion. It’s been one thing after another. But it’s not my problem; [it’s] their overtime budget.”

Link: http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2004/11/07/union_contests_fenway_patrols/

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