Grand Lodge News

FOP-IAFF TEAM UP WITH VICE PRESIDENT AND SENATE LEADERS ON PUBLIC SAFETY

Police, Firefighters, Vice President Biden and Senate Leaders United on Public Safety Funding

Chuck Canterbury, National President of the Fraternal Order of Police, applauded his counterpart, Harold A. Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) for hosting an event in Washington, D.C., with Vice President Joseph R. Biden, Jr., and Senate leaders to highlight the Administration�s proposal to provide Federal assistance to local and State public safety agencies.

�Thousands of law enforcement and other public safety officers have been laid off around the country,� Canterbury said. �This is making our streets and neighborhoods less safe and putting emergency responders at greater risk because we do not have the resources we need to protect the public.�

Today�s event is a follow up to a similar event held last week at a fire department in Flint, Michigan.  National President Canterbury and General President Schaitberger both accompanied Vice President Biden and spoke in support of the Administration�s proposal to provide $4 billion for the hiring program administered by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) and $1 billion for similar programs administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Maryland State Lodge President John A. �Rodney� Barlett, Jr., a twenty-one year veteran of Prince George�s County Police Department and a former Sheriff, spoke on behalf of the National FOP at today�s event, telling the officers and firefighters in attendance:

Many of the politicians working in this building say that we simply have to do more with less.  More with less.  We keep hearing that, but what they do NOT tell you is what that really means.  It means there will be less cops on the street and more crime in your neighborhoods.  It means more time to get a fire under control because there will be less firefighters and equipment responding when your home catches fire.  It means more crimes will go uninvestigated and less criminals caught and prosecuted.  It  means your family will be less safe and the officers on the street will be in more danger.                                          

The hiring program administered by the COPS Office has been part of our nations crime-fighting strategy for nearly two decades.  Community oriented policing, zero tolerance, the broken windows theory, cops on the street.   Abandoning these approaches is not a new public safety strategy, this is a public safety disaster.  We cannot let this happen to our communities.

The event was streamed live at: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/back-to-work-act�We are very grateful to Vice President Biden and our allies in the Senate who are supporting us while we try and keep the streets safe,� Canterbury said. 

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