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Bloomfield, CT Police Union Sounds Alarm About Deteriorating Quality of Life & Safety Issues

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BLOOMFIELD, Conn. - eTradeWire -- (Bloomfield, CT) – Working without a new bargaining agreement for over a year, a recently expired retirement agreement and dealing with new police accountability regulations that were just signed into law, the Bloomfield Police union president today strongly criticized the town mayor and council members for their lack of oversight that has led to an increased crime rate and a struggling police department attempting to hire and retain quality officers.

"The Bloomfield Police Department is currently trending in the wrong direction!  For over a year now, our officers have been working without an employment agreement.  The mayor and town council have been reluctant to increase wages and benefits to a competitive level for our officers.  We have been losing quality officers and this trend will continue.  Since 2016, 13 officers have resigned to work elsewhere," explained Fraternal Order of Police (F.O.P.) Lodge 36 President Steve Graboski.  "We need to look ahead.  This means addressing the rising crime rate with a police department with quality recruits and properly trained officers – and the way to do this is to address the issues in our contracts so we will attract quality officers and then keep them here instead of becoming a training ground for other departments."

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According to a November 2019 published report in RoadSnacks, a Web site that analyzes cities and states using various data then evaluates the most dangerous cities, Bloomfield, CT was ranked Connecticut's sixth most dangerous town/city – that's five positions up from the previous year. ( www.roadsnacks.net/these-are-the-10-most-dangerous-cities-in-connecticut/ ).

"Unfortunately, Bloomfield is seen as a stepping stone for career law enforcement officers mainly due to the town's compensation and benefits structure.  In general, officers may work there for two years then move on to one of the neighboring towns or cities that offer a competitive wage and benefits package," said Connecticut State F.O.P. President John Krupinsky.

"The safety and quality of life of all Bloomfield residents must be held to the highest standard.  The mayor and town council should strive to meet this standard.  We can't sit idly by as the crime rate rises and our law enforcement dwindles.  I know numerous officers currently seeking new employment opportunities in the region," said Graboski.  "It feels like every day, I hear Bloomfield residents pointing out that they do not see any familiar faces at the police department anymore.  Unfortunately, this is a direct result of the retention problems, and nothing will change until our bargaining agreement is finalized."

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The Fraternal Order of Police is the nation's largest law enforcement organization, with over 325,000 members and over 2,100 lodges throughout the United States.  For further information, visit www.ctstatefop.org.

Ron Dresner

Source: Bloomfield Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 36
Filed Under: Government

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