Sunday, June 12, 2011

More Police Officers Coming To Uptown

The City is putting 150 additional officers on the street, starting next Sunday, and some of them are going to Uptown's police districts:  the 20th and 23rd.  Read about it here.  The 19th District, just west of Uptown, is also getting additional officers.

We are thrilled.  The gang situation in Uptown is the worst we've ever seen it, even though the rest of our community is changing for the better, with street festivals, more retail and more community involvement than ever.  Let's hope this leads to safer streets without hearing bullets ring out every week and seeing hand-to-hand drug transactions on certain corners every single day.

With the police working closely with three new aldermen who are eager to show that they're making improvements to their wards, we are hopeful for the first time in a long, long time.


  1. Fan-friggin-tastic, we need all we can get.

  2. Positive things going on in the hood these days!

  3. I think it is an absolute travesty that this mayor is working SOOO hard to dupe the public into believing that things are improving and he is somehow going to put 1000 police officers "on the beat" without hiring A SINGLE ONE!

    When he recently claimed to put 500 officers on the street from TRU (the Targeted Response Unit) and MSF (the Mobile Strike Force), the mayor was not being truthful. The first thing he did though, was force his new Superintendent to VERIFY this fabrication AND convince the media to participate in repeating it to the citizens. I mean, seriously, if 500 cab drivers stopped driving Yellow cabs today and began driving Checker cabs tomorrow, would Chicago have 500 more cab drivers? Obviously not! Same thing with the police.

    Worse yet, of the above 500 officers, ZERO went to 019, 020 or 023, even though a dozen or so may have gone to TRU/MSF FROM these districts. So ultimately, our districts have LOST manpower.

    At least before, if there was a major incident occurring in Uptown, MSF or TRU could send manpower here on a moments notice... not anymore, since these units are disbanded.

    Now, Rahm says 150 PO's are coming from "inside" and are being sent to 15 other districts including 023, 020 and 019. That's only about 10 per district, and spread over three shifts and accounting for days off and furloughs etc, you're looking at about one car per shift. Of course, each shift is ALREADY short three cars or more, so they're only playing catch-up.

    I don't mean to sound so pessimistic, but when Rahm stops playing with his smoke and mirrors and announces that the city is HIRING 1000 new officers, then it will be a time to smile.

  4. I'm thrilled too!

    It's funny, but the dreaded 'flash-mob' attacks on the pristine Mag Mile are all over the national news.

    Us Uptowners, are painfully aware of this kind of crap up here.

  5. BCP(Ret.), with all due respect, I have worked for a government agency myself for nearly a quarter century, and I have experienced years of good budgets and bad budgets. I hate to break the bad news to you, but NONE of us--at ANY level of government--have the resources to do what needs to be done, let alone do the things we would like to do in service to the public. As we speak, some in Washington would like for me to do my own full-time job AND take on all the responsibilities of two colleagues who retired--that's government-wide, not just me--and do all of it with 20% of the resources I had available for me to do my job ten years ago. We are expected to focus on the "most important" tasks that have been identified for us, expected to be highly-efficient, and come up with ways to do more with less.

    As much as I respect you and the men and women of the CPD, I need to tell you that you all must learn to do what you can with the resources you have, and learn new, less-expensive, less time-consuming, more efficient ways to accomplish what the mayor we elected wants done. He hasn't been given an easy task by having to put lipstick on the pig (so to speak) that he inherited. This is no longer 1996. None of us really has things easy anymore. The question becomes--what are you going to suggest to our Aldermen for solutions? What programs do you suggest get slashed or eliminated to free up scarce tax dollars to hire more beat cops? Should we tell them to reduce pensions? Close libraries? Turn off street lights to save electricity? Reduce city services to 3 days per week? Turn CTA into a rush-hour-only service? Put turnstiles and gates at the parks and charge for entry? Put toll booths on Lake Shore Drive, Sheridan Road, Ashland Avenue, and Western Avenue? We all know that Emanuel is playing a shell game right now--he has been in office for all of ONE MONTH, and doesn't have much choice until he does his own budget--and I would personally appreciate it if you kwitcherbitchin for a while and try to be realistic while the latest iteration of Chicago government tries to keep the City SOLVENT from the poor choices made by the last mayor and aldermen.

  6. @ bear60640
    It appears that you believe that the "do more with less" concept to reduce the police budget is something new for the CPD. Trust me, it isn't. It's been going on for a decade or more. Most recently, the ranks have purposely been thinned of the oldest, highest paid but most experienced officers with enticements of no cost health insurance if they would leave the force NOW instead of later.

    You can only play this "shell game" with public safety for just so long before the whole thing collapses on top of itself.

    I'm not trying to be a doomsayer here, but all you have to do is read about the 10 or so homicides and some 30 people shot this weekend to see that the critical balance is beginning to tip the WRONG way. And let me point out here that I haven't even mentioned the marauding savages sweeping the loop and near north areas feasting on tourists and other, wealthier folks for their iPossessions.

    There are budget constraints for tax dollars everywhere and when you say that "NONE of us--at ANY level of government--have the resources to do what needs to be done", where do YOU draw the line with public safety? What INCREASE of Uptown's citizens being robbed or shot or beaten is acceptable to YOU? How many victims should we accept in exchange for flower boxes in the street or pretty, feelgood "streetscapes" with faux painted cobblestone crosswalks? Or how about hundreds of millions of our tax dollars that are disappearing into thin air because our politicians want to court the illegal invading, sanctuary city population/vote?

    You can talk budgets and toll booths on LSD and any other kwitcherbitchin, liberal claptrap all you want, but MY point is that while everyone is being TOLD that police officers are being created out of thin air and surrounding all of us in a warm and fuzzy cocoon, its nothing but lies! THAT is the elephant in the room. If that is the society YOU want to live in, where we should ACCEPT a certain amount of victimization and lies from our elected officials, so be it, but I assure you that over my career, NOT ONCE did I receive a report from a victim who said they thought it was OK with them!

    It's sad how desensitized we have become to violence when it is heaped on people other than oneself. Hearing about it on the news, day after day, just makes us shake our heads, but eventually, we just accept it as if its SUPPOSED TO happen. The problem is that it's starting to visit OUR community and OUR streets and how long will it be before some reporter knocks on OUR door and asks us what kind of person OUR neighbor was that WAS MURDERED last night?

    Look, bear60640, I'm not picking a fight with you or anyone else. I just get soooo frustrated with lying politicians who treat us all like a flock of ignorant sheep who will believe and do whatever we're told. I'm sure that most of us assume that Rahm Emanual intends to run for the Presidency after Barack Obama has left the White House. Unfortunately, to me, that means he will do NOTHING as Mayor of Chicago that will jeopardize his chances to attain that goal. His total commitment to US, will be little more than trying to keep the lid on things for the next four years and to try not to get embarrassed by anything in the process (he's already expressed frustration at the media reporting of the so-called 'flash mobs'). If he TRIES to be innovative here on any grand scale and is unsuccessful, he will just have provided ammunition to his Republican opponent in his 2016 Presidential bid.

    My fear and suspicion is that the Mayor of Chicago will spend the next four or six years building up his resume and credentials for that historic run for the POTUS and will do little for us in the process.

  7. To Bear 60640 and everyone else:

    I too have worked and served in government for over thirty years. I see where the city flushes money down the drain for crappy projects if it makes the right people rich. But, the police have to do more with less, and if successful will have to do even more with even less because they don't make the right people rich.

    Your safety depends upon this, draft a short letter to your alderman DEMANDING that the city start hiring police to bring the CPD up to the strength level we are paying for. Then email it to your alderman (find them at, and request a reply that you will share at your workplace and with your neighbors and family.

    See if you get a, "we’ll get it done" reply or will he or she excuses and blame the economy and George Bush.

  8. Big City Police (Ret.), you sound like a bitter old man, and quite frankly, hearing your rant pisses me off. Nothing is more annoying that people that make accusations without any basis for said accusations. Where are your facts?

    You said Rahm is tricking us into thinking he "is somehow going to put 1000 police officers "on the beat" without hiring A SINGLE ONE!"

    Guess what?! He IS! He is taking administrative positions, ya know, the guys sitting behind the desk all day? And putting them on the streets. If there are 150 more officers on the street, then there are 150 more officers on the street, period. Whether they were hired or relocated, it doesn't matter! They are where they should be, on the street, not behind a desk doing paperwork.

    As for your other rants and ramblings, whatever. Your just another person bitching about the government, but you don't offer a SINGLE SOLUTION, not even a single idea!!! I could care less what you think Rahm will do in four years or what you think about other 'liberals'. Why don't you take a look in the mirror and figure out what YOU can do to help the situation? Since when has bitching and name calling solved anything?

    Grow up, offer ideas and solutions, and engage in meaningful dialogue, not dribble. As soon as you bring 'conservative' or 'liberal' into the equation, you lose all credibility in my book. Be independent and stop playing the divisive politics that many politicians want us to play. We have alot more in common than not, so let's work together.

  9. Big City Police had a legit point about an overall shortage in officers....a problem that won't be fixed a month into a term, howwever it was lost amidst a political tirade and the kind of doom and gloom everything is going to hell and a handbasket attitude that has become so common in Chicago.

  10. Pretty sad when a retired Cop, who has had experience on what is really going on gets called out. He is right Rahm is stealing from Peter to pay Paul. Yes we should put more cops on the street before we do some other basic cosmetic stuff. Example would be the repairs of the concrete at Sunnyside and Sheriden. I didnt see a thing wrong with the old concrete, yes it might have been old. I am sure this happens all over the city. As for CTA, yes we could cut down the number of stops and buses. How many times do you see three of the same route back to back. Really is there a need for a stop at say Wilson and Sheriden and then Wilson and sunnyside or Clarnedon and Sunnyside.

  11. Where to begin...
    @ S... Agreed, and point well taken as to the police not making the right people rich. There's a "pissed off" poster on here though, who doesn't share our cynicism and that will demand "where are your facts"? Apparently they know a lot more than you or I with our 60 years of combined government employment experience.

    @ Alek... yeah, sorry for the tirade. As I clearly stated originally, my point was about the dishonesty from our politicians and was really a clear (I thought) explanation of exactly how we are being deceived.
    But what do I know?

    @ carc jr board... Thanks, it is sad. I'm used to that though. Lots of people think they know more about the police department and profession than the police do. I'm not sure if they really realize how... (lets say) "uninformed" they sound though.

  12. @ CTP(the Rumdumb Hero!)... First lets deal with your need for facts:

    1 ~ "...But a two-year hiring slowdown has left the Chicago Police Department more than 2,300 officers a day short of authorized strength, counting vacancies, officers on limited duty and medical leave..."
    per Gary Schenkel, Chief of Chicago’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications

    2 ~ “To say this is 500 more officers on the street — no, it’s not. Don’t mislead the public. There are no more police officers today than there were yesterday." per Pres. Mike Shields, Fraternal Order of Police

    3 ~ "Asked twice whether he still intends to honor his campaign promise to put 1,000 additional officers on the street, Emanuel appeared to hedge. His staff subsequently argued that Emanuel promised 1,000 new officers “on the beat” and that, by that measure, he’s half-way home."

    It actually amuses me that you're pissed off about your problems with my comments but then YOU proceed into your rant, which apparently is OK. You don't impress me. I spent 30 years dealing with grumpy people whose only opinion that mattered was their own.

    You don't seem to have much of a handle on the deceit spewed out by government bureaucrats or perhaps are a Rahm apologist. Either way, I find it hard to believe ANYONE would be as gullible as you appear to be, to believe that 1000 new cops can appear, out of thin air, without any new hiring... DUH!

    As far as your wanting to refer to me as a bitter old man, well, how intelligent! You must be a legend in your own mind if you think that kind of drivel is impressing anyone. Talk to the hand.

  13. Oh BigCityPolice, you clearly have not read my post. Or if you did, you were too offended to actually comprehend what I wrote. But again, you are simply wrong. Seriously, it is not rocket science. How hard is it to understand that if there are 150 officers taken from desk jobs, put back in uniform, and deployed on beats, that there are now 150 MORE OFFICERS ON THE STREETS?!?!? Please acknowledge that that is true.

    I know there are NO MORE OFFICERS than there were before, but there ARE MORE OFFICERS ON THE STREETS!

    Although I have very little law enforcement experience, I do have alot of experience in business. As a small business owner and former business student, I have come to realize that sometimes there are choices and ultimately sacrifices that need to be made. The police department, just like any business operation today, needs to adopt a "lean production" method of operation. That means that anything that is not good for the end consumer (meaning anything that doesn't contribute to our safety) should be considered waste and thus be eliminated. 150 cushy desk jobs (also known as waste) have now been eliminated. At the same time, we have reallocated those resources and become a (lets hope) more efficient product/service. Do you see how that works?

    I apologize if I offended you by saying "you sound like you a bitter old man", but I based that off of your complete lack of any substance in your post. Again, WHERE ARE YOUR SOLUTIONS? Where are your ideas? What can the city cut? What programs need to be shut down? Where can we take money to be used for additional hiring? You can try and insult me all you like, but the difference between my "rant" and yours is the fact that my rant is true.

    You say random things like "Either way, I find it hard to believe ANYONE would be as gullible as you appear to be, to believe that 1000 new cops can appear, out of thin air, without any new hiring... DUH!"

    SHOW ME, PLEASE PLEASE SHOW ME, where I stated I think 1,000 new cops are coming out of nowhere? I, unlike you, am seeing the situation for what it is. Rahm isn't using smoke and mirrors. In fact, he is telling it like it is.
    Again, he simply stated that taking 150 officers off of desk jobs and putting them ON THE STREETS actually DOES mean there are 150 more cops on the street.
    That is a fact. It is true, no matter what you or I think or say.

    and things like this..
    "I'm used to that though. Lots of people think they know more about the police department and profession than the police do. I'm not sure if they really realize how... (lets say) "uninformed" they sound though."

    Wow. Again, please please pretty please show me where I said I know ANYTHING about the police department! For the umpteenth time, I only stated the facts! 150 taken off of desk jobs and put on the beat, means +150 cops on the street! And it makes ME sound uninformed? No, it makes YOU sound uneducated.

    If you have so much experience, then do us all a favor and drop some knowledge on us! And by that, I mean offer up tangible solutions and ideas that can actually be implemented. Nobody cares for complaining, and that is all you have done sir.

  14. @ CTP...

    "150 cushy desk jobs (also known as waste) have now been eliminated."

    Not so fast, rocket scientist! What the hell do YOU know what it takes to run a police district let alone an ENTIRE DEPARTMENT? You know of course that the police have the power of life and death and that they can arrest people and take away their freedom, right? These are VERY SERIOUS responsibilities and in performing these duties, many legal requirements must be met and documents must be generated IN EVERY INSTANCE... Case reports, arrest reports, court complaints, property inventories, evidence processing forms, firearm processing forms, notifications to Detectives or specialized follow-up units or gun registration, or FOID card checks or checks for local and state and NCIC fugitive warrants, or to the ASA Felony Review Unit, vehicle tow forms etc, etc. These reports are all part of the court package necessary for any criminal prosecution. Inside officers are part of these NECESSARY functions.

    Desk phones also MUST be manned 24/7 to field calls from citizens, reporters, Dept. brass, States Attorneys, arrestees' defense attorneys, or family members, return calls from warrant checks and follow-up units, etc, etc. It is a FACT that some of these inside positions that you refer to as "waste", are more work and more stressful than working the street. I have worked them.

    There are also legal REQUIREMENTS that must be met like maintaining a chain of evidence (sworn police officers only) in narcotics cases, and other rules of evidence that preclude the removal of sworn officers. These are required by a court of law, and NOT subject to attempts by politicians to alter public perceptions.

    Obviously the City and the Dept. recognized the NEED for these positions since they agreed to keep these people in place and guarantee it in writing in the last 4 or 5 police bargaining agreements.

    From the Fraternal Order of Police website:

    "The Lodge has received numerous calls from members who were successful bidders for Unit Duty Assignments listed in Section 23.9 of our Collective Bargaining Agreement. These Unit Duty Assignments include Review Officers, District Desk Officers, District Watch Relief Officers, and Lockup Officers. Some members have "heard" that their positions will be eliminated and they will be reassigned. The Lodge has not yet received anything in writing."

    "These bid positions CANNOT be eliminated per that same contract section. The Lodge will take any and all steps that are necessary to protect these Officer's contractual rights."

    "Perhaps one of the decision makers has passed bad information on to our new Superintendent. Someone should advise him that there is a distinct difference between administrative personnel and Officers who have secured a guaranteed contractual right."

  15. Additionally:

    I have seen it a hundred times, CTP. An order comes down saying Commanders must reduce their office staff. The next day, ON PAPER, front office people are put on the daily worksheets as working a foot beat, but they actually do not leave the front office. Is it a FACT? Absolutely! Can I PROVE IT no.

    Official CPD Transfer Orders are published on a regular basis showing officers being transferred to this district or that unit. Simultaneously, OTHER orders come out that "detail" officers to DIFFERENT districts or units so that ON PAPER they're assigned to one place but are actually working somewhere else. This is a FACT. Is there PROOF that I can show you? No. These are internal administrative documents that are not available outside the Department. These manipulations SPECIFICALLY exist so the public won't know. It's one of many ways that the politics of clout play out in Chicago. That I can't prove it means nothing since this is not a court of law, but at any given time, hundreds and hundreds of officers are working somewhere other than where Department assignment sheets "officially" say they are. Trust me, being a former business student and small business owner would do little to prepare you for the political shenanigans of 22 years of one mayor rule in Chicago. Perhaps suggesting you are a bit naive would have been a better choice of word than uninformed since you so badly want to believe what you are reading in the papers. Things in this town just are not that black and white, however.

    I know you're big on solutions. You tell me. I'm sure no one here wants to hear mine, that would start with ending all of this sanctuary city nonsense. Have at it.

  16. You're right. All the effort is pointless since there is so much corruption and gross abuse of the public's trust. It's pointless to work with and for your neighbors because ultimately, the corrupt powers that be will manage to brainwash us all into believing this or that, whichever benefits them most. It's useless to spend my time improving the lives around me and offering solutions, because I have the choice to not be blinded by lying politicians and corrupt cops.

    Or...I have the choice to be honest myself, and accept the realities around me without declaring doom on everything that is. I apologize for being (surprisingly) naive about just how corrupt the police force is. Regardless, I'm still committed to helping myself and my neighbors improve our quality of life. What I'm not sorry for is asking for tangible ideas from someone with so much supposed experience. What do you have to offer other than the negative?

  17. BCP--I think, by your comment about my "liberal claptrap", that you are doing the same sort of "conservative spouting" that prevents one from hearing and understanding what others are saying. I have never understood these 150 officers to be conjured out of thin air--it seems pretty obvious that they are reassigned from other duties. The point I was making was that these are no ordinary budget shortfalls we find ourselves in--even though we obviously need more officers on the streets, we are NOT getting more without either making severe cuts to other city programs (which may or may not be important to many of us) or by coming up with new revenue streams. And I will repeat that Emanuel has been in office now for about a month--I doubt that you were getting meritorious service awards yourself after spending your first month on the beat--replacing my great-uncle who just retired from the CPD when you were a rookie--so back off and complain about his performance when and if Emanuel REALLY gives us something to complain about, OK? In the meantime, try to think outside of the box and be constructive and realistic--offer up ideas for solutions instead of being a sniping travesty all the time.

  18. While I have decided to end my comments on this post, I felt the need to correct the misconception that I'm painting the ENTIRE CPD as corrupt (YOUR word, not mine). 99% of the police officers that you all will deal with on a daily basis that are working the beat cars in this City, are decent, hard working cops that very few people could measure up to in terms of ethics and morals.

    What some want to characterize as a corrupt police force, well, that was and is how the bosses, Commanders and ranks above them, maneuver around each other in their political hack, back stabbing little dance among each other to show who is more important. This is due to years of political insider promotions under the guise of "merit". If you want to use the word corrupt on these high ranking officials, you won't get an argument from me. But calling a blue shirt, patrolling around on his beat car, corrupt IS NOT fair. The beat cop is the heart and soul of any police department, and pretty much, here in Chicago, it means they DON'T have any clout and, as yet, are untouched by the politics.
    I'll leave it at that.

  19. Here are some suggestions to stop wasting money... Stop with the flower boxes and hanging baskets planted with annual flowers! Sure downtown looks pretty but it isn't safe! Cancell the private landscaping contract that takes care of the median flower boxes. I watch them close a lane of traffic during the morning rush hour to water the plants when it just rained! Stop repaving city streets, then a year later re-tear up the streets to replace the sewers! Stop with the fake cobblestone crosswalks! Stop free city health clinics for illegal immigrants (Wilson & Hazel). Why is Chicago in the free health care business it is the countys' and federal governments'responsibility to provide health care to LEGAL U.S. citizens! Cancel the Taste of Chicago it looses money for the city and causes too many problems with gangbanging thugs! Eliminate take home vehicles to city bosses! Eliminate body guard details for alderman, they are and always were allowed to carry guns! All city departments are top heavy with bosses, so eliminte positions and combine departments! Stop paying gangbanging thugs for B.S. complaints against police officers because it is easier to pay them then fight them! How's that for a start? And to Big city police...the sheep will remain sheep until they are a victim of a crime. Then their eyes will open as to the realities of the world. Until then they will believe whatever the media tells them and we know who controlls the media.


  20. Oh yea, I forgot....get rid of half of the alderman. We do not need 50, we could survive with 25 like other major cities do. Sorry James.

  21. More 'ideas' laced with criticism. And downtown isn't safe? Jeez, the fear among people nowadays has gotten a little out of control. DOWNTOWN ISN't SAFE?!?!? My goodness, is there anywhere safe then, anywhere at all?!

    Nobody leave your homes! We're all sheeple! YOU could be next! Then you will really see the lies Rahm spues! Ahhhh the humanity!

    @Frustrated 50, I agree with almost all your suggestions for cutting costs and services, but your assumptions and backhanded insults make them seem insincere. I've lived in Chicago/Maywood my entire life. I've been the victim (and even the perp) of crime in my day, so save your "the sheep will remain sheep until they are a victim of a crime" crap for somebody you actually know.

  22. Unrelated, but despite nice weather, it has been relatively quiet in Uptown. Knock on wood.