Source Pravda.Ru

U.S. Detroit shorten staff

Detroit Police Department facing a budget crisis announced plans Monday to lay off 150 police officers and merge the city's 12 police precincts into six district stations.

In addition, the department's command staff will be downsized, with those savings used to allow 35 to 40 police officers to keep their jobs.

Police Chief Ella Bully-Cummings said she also will reallocate officers assigned to desk and other support functions, freeing up about 250 officers and allowing a net gain of about 100 officers on patrol after the layoffs.

"We took what we considered a crisis and tuned it into an opportunity," Bully-Cummings was quoted as saying by the AP.

She said she also will merge some divisions within the department, such as narcotics, gang squad and vice.

The union representing officers will ask for a court order to prevent layoffs, Marty Bandemer, president of the Detroit Police Officers Association, told The Detroit News for a Tuesday story.

He said the layoffs violate labor agreements and that the department did not consult the union when drafting the reorganization plan.

Combining precincts, he added, means patrol officers will have to cover a larger area.

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