The head of Chicago’s largest police union believes his officers in his union should have the right to go to arbitration over the most serious disciplinary decisions, but reform leaders believe doing so could “set us back decades.”
If 30 members of the Chicago City Council vote Wednesday to reject the changes to the police discipline system, a judge will likely decide whether Chicago officers facing a suspension of at least a year or termination have the right to have their cases decided by an arbitrator rather than by the Chicago Police Board.
In a highly unusual move, Mayor Brandon Johnson will ask members of the Workforce Committee to reject a key part of the proposed contract extension, which would give some Chicago officers the right to have their discipline cases decided by an arbitrator rather than by the Chicago Police Board.
The deal, which must be approved by the Chicago City Council, resolves the issues left over from the contract agreement reached by former Mayor Lori Lightfoot in July 2021 that ended the longest union negotiations in the city’s history.
The board on Tuesday rejected a motion brought by the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7, which sought to move 22 disciplinary cases from the board to an independent arbitrator, following a summer ruling that opened the door for such a shift.
The board ordered the city to rehire employees that were terminated after they refused to get the vaccine and awarded back pay – plus interest – to those employees who were disciplined because.
The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 7’s political action committee made an in-kind contribution of approximately $10,000 to the campaign of Julian “Jumpin’” Perez, who used those funds to pay for the flyers.
The Chicago Board of Election Commissioners removed Frederick Collins from the Feb. 28 ballot on Friday, ruling that the Chicago police officer had not collected at least 12,500 valid signatures from registered Chicago voters to qualify for the contest.
According to the Cook County State's Attorney's Office, Cook County Judge Joseph Claps issued the verdict Tuesday in the bench trial of Officer Melvina Bogard, who was charged last year with the nonfatal shooting of Ariel Roman inside the Grand Red Line station.
It is the second time in six months that alderpeople have called an emergency meeting of the City Council to publicly push back against Lightfoot’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate. The alderpeople demanded the session one day after the deadline for Chicago Police Department members to get at least the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Employees who are not vaccinated will not be paid and may face additional “disciplinary action, up to and including termination,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s office said in a statement Friday evening.
Chicago Police officers must be vaccinated against COVID-19, an arbitrator ruled Wednesday, handing Mayor Lori Lightfoot a significant victory.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot issued a statement Wednesday night saying the city had dropped its lawsuit at her discretion following an increase in compliance among Chicago police officers with the city’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
A day after he announced his intention to leave the department, John Catanzara — the first-term president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7 — posted a picture of his personnel action request on his Facebook page, which shows that he has indeed retired from the CPD.
The stunning announcement comes after John Catanzara, the head of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7, spent hours testifying at his own termination hearing Monday.
“It is not surprising to me that he did not want to face accountability for his own conduct,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said.