Even on the way out Mayor Daley cannot be straight with us. After weeks and weeks of hammering away telling us that crime is down — when anyone west of the lake knows it’s not — along comes this half-truth.
The city at the end of this year will have about 950 vacant police officer positions, said Gene Munin, the city’s budget director. Although the city plans to hire 200 officers next year, it projects that 300 will leave the force.
Munin later conceded that the projection of 300 departures was not in keeping with historical patterns. Typically, about 450 officers retire or leave the force for other reasons each year, he said.
The truth is that we’re already down about 2,500 – 3,000 police officer positions. So the reality is that we will be short another 950+ police next year. That “another” is a key word missing from the Mayor’s mouthpiece.
Police are critical to the viability of this city. Residents must feel safe not only in their homes but on the streets where they travel. Tourists will find other places to visit if we do not maintain law and order. People who travel for business may be forced to come, but they will hide in their hotels and get out as soon as they are able.
You may have noticed that travel to Mexico is extremely cheap now-a-days. It’s a violence plagued place where American’s not longer want to travel. This is NOT a comparison, residents know Chicago is safer than many big cities in the U.S. But we cannot deny the reality that continuing to short change the residents on police protection is a sure fire way to create a city that no one wants to live in or visit.