The cops are whining about a 3-per-cent pay increase they say is too little. But they'll soon be laughing all the way to the bank. Seems police brass are going to punish community groups for their smaller-than-expected budget by making them hire "paid duty" officers for events previously staffed by on-duty officers. If there was ever a cash cow for police, it's paid duty. Add it to pension benefits and overtime pay and it's clear T.O.'s finest are doing just fine.
What is paid duty?
Jobs police perform outside their regularly scheduled duties
Typical paid-duty gigs: directing traffic at Ikea or at construction sites and film sets; manning the barricades at parades and street festivals; minding jewellery stores; trade shows; funerals
Sweetheart paid-duty gigs: Leafs, Raptors, Blue Jays and Argos games; concerts
Types of events where paid-duty officers are generally not required: those sponsored by community-based, non-profit organizations
Functions paid-duty police are not permitted to perform: on picket lines; functions likely to promote confrontations; work as bodyguards or money escorts; body searches
Number of paid-duty events handled by police in 98: About 800
Why it's unfair
Some community events, like Caribana and charity casinos, must hire paid-duty officers. but some, like Gay Pride and the Santa Claus parade, need not. Who makes the decision? Some community events, like Caribana and charity casinos, must hire paid-duty officers. but some, like Gay Pride and the Santa Claus parade, need not. Who makes the decision?
The unit commander of the area or the chief himself.
How much do cops make?
average annual salary of a first-class constable: average annual salary of a first-class constable:
Average number of paid-duty events available per officer per unit: about 15
Highest average number of paid-duty events available per officer per unit: about 30
How much extra a constable can earn in a year working one paid-duty gig a week: more than $20,000 (based on an average shift of 12 hours)
How much does it cost?
What it costs business or community groups to hire paid-duty police:
constable -- $45 per hour
sergeant* -- $50 per hour
staff sergeant -- $57 per hour
*For every four constables, one sergeant must also be hired *For every four constables, one sergeant must also be hired
What security guards are paid: about $8-$12 an hour
What it costs to rent police equipment:
cruisers/motorcycles: $37.38 per hour cruisers/motorcycles: $37.38 per hour
What Caribana says it costs to hire paid-duty cops for its parade and island party last year: $18,455.56
What it cost organizers to hire 70 paid-duty officers for a rave at the Ex last year: $45,000 (each cop got roughly $642.85)
Number of sworn and civilian members of the force who have a second job: 236
Number in security-related fields: 23
Who sets the hourly paid-duty rates? the police union
Who hands out paid-duty plums? the chief of police or unit commanders
Percentage increase in pay police will be asking for in next round of contract talks: 10
Sources: Toronto Police Service, Toronto police services board, Gay Pride Committee, Caribbean Cultural Committee, Police Services Act
Cops' cash grab