In another step to quell New Orleans’ overwhelming violent crime, Police Superintendent Warren Riley asked the City Council for $5.7 million to mandate 60-hour workweeks for most of the city’s uniformed officers, reports the New Orleans Times-Picayune. The proposal calls for uniformed patrol officers to work five 12-hour days, a prospect that didn’t sit well with many of the rank and file. “It is a great opportunity to reduce crime in areas of concern,” Riley said. “It would not be a situation where officers are worked to death.”
Violent crime reached a crescendo in August, typically one of the most violent months of the year. There were 29 homicides over the course of August’s 31 days. “We want to make sure that August doesn’t reoccur,” Riley said. He said longer shifts would put 33 percent more officers on duty at any time. Many officers supplement their pay by working up to 24 hours a week at private security details. Officers said that although overtime pay would supplement lost detail wages, they could be replaced at their private security jobs.