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$2,000 retention bonus, 20% raises part tentative new Chicago Police deal

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(The Center Square) – Chicago Police officers have a new contractual agreement with the city, including paid parental leave, a retention bonus, 20% pay hikes, and other incentives.

The Fraternal Order of Police and Mayor Brandon Johnson reached the tentative agreement and, if approved by the city council, it would provide officers with paid parental leave and retention bonuses.

Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7 President John Catanzara explained the deal on his YouTube channel.

“The city came to us early on when Mayor Johnson took over and said they wanted to get the contract done, but they wanted to extend it so they would have labor peace going forward,” Catanzara said. “They asked what it would take to get that done.”

The deal includes pay raises for all officers starting at the beginning of next year.

“In January of 2024, we were scheduled to get a two and a half percent increase, that is now five percent,” Catanzara said. “January of 2025, same thing. We were supposed to get two and a half. That is now five.”

Officers will also get up to $2,000 in retention bonues as part of the new contract.

Johnson said the deal will accomplish two goals laid out for the contracts.

“With this agreement in place, our administration can now direct our full focus on implementing accountability measures within the Chicago Police Department, supporting police officers, and a robust community safety agenda,” Johnson said. “My administration remains committed to moving forward with any avenue available to keep the police disciplinary process transparent and utilizing the full force of government comprehensive community safety agenda that will bring community leaders, businesses, philanthropic partners, faith leaders, and youth leaders together.”

The contract was discussed for nearly a year before the tentative agreement was reached.

“Regrettably, after phase one was complete and a promise to get phase two done, the previous administration sat on their hands with a very clear stalling tactic,” Catanzara said. “Thank God it cost her [Lori Lightfoot] her election, and she is gone.”

Johnson and Chicago Public Schools officials announced in June that employees would get up to 12 weeks of paid paternity leave; since then, police have fought for the same leave, which will be granted in their new contract if approved by the city council.

Officers will also receive tuition reimbursement and will have any disciplinary discussions or hearings held privately and out of the public eye, as well as changes to body camera protocols.

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