D.C. Police Officers Protest Arbitration Decision on Pay
Monday, February, 10, 2014
The main police union in the District of Columbia in the U.S. has publicly criticized a recent arbitration decision on the pay raises for police officers, saying that the arbitration panel was grossly incompetent in comparing the D.C. police department to surrounding suburban communities instead of to other large city police departments. The arbitration panel awarded the union a 4% raise for the second half of the 2013 fiscal year, far short of union expectations.
The union’s representative, Kristopher Baumann, characterized the decision as “disrespect” for the police officers who risk their lives in service to the community. No actions have been announced by the police union in response; the arbitration decision is binding and by law, police officers cannot strike.
The Public Safety Committee of the City Council has announced a retroactive 3% cost-of-living pay increase as a way of defusing the situation and pacifying officers without violating the arbitration agreement. The police union has not commented on the proposed legislation, which has yet to pass the council.