LAPD police union boss tells officers to leave the city: ‘Go somewhere that understands your worth’

Los Angeles Police Protective League’s Vice President Jerretta Sandoz bluntly told police officers that they should leave the city and go somewhere where they are appreciated after salary negotiations failed last month.

The union boss contended that officers were suffering under the heavy hand of hostile City Council members, according to a statement on Facebook ahead of the expiration of the LAPD’s contract on June 30, as reported by the Los Angeles Times.

“Go somewhere that respects the work you do and you don’t have to beg for a great contract,” she advised, according to a screenshot of her now-deleted post that was seen by the LA Times which snapped it up and ran with it.

“Go somewhere that has a city council or city manager that openly acknowledges the great work you do, go somewhere that doesn’t have Two or more City Council members who hate you (no exaggeration),” Sandoz, a 20-year veteran of the force, further reportedly urged her fellow officers.

The Los Angeles Police Department took strong issue with Sandoz’s comment which probably is why it was deleted. The LAPD has been experiencing heavy attrition in its ranks over the last few years. The number of active police officers has dropped to just over 9,000. That’s down from 10,000 in 2019.

The embattled police department is set to lose another 500 officers in the next nine months due to retirements and resignations, according to an LA Times estimate from April. Los Angeles has become increasingly violent and ever more dangerous for officers. Couple that with hostile leftists in government who want to put them in even further jeopardy or in prison and it is little wonder officers are moving elsewhere.

Police Commissioner Erroll Southers has called the loss of officers “very, very discouraging,” according to the LA Times.

The union and police department agree that staff shortages have a lot to do with an increasingly hostile attitude towards police. The thin blue line flag was recently banned and they see that as yet another indication of hostility. In the first half of 2022, the city saw the highest number of homicides in 15 years and the city re-instated its no-bail policy in May 2023 which also plays into officers leaving.

LA Mayor Karen Bass is no friend to the police either. She aims to increase the force to 9,500 but her policies are also antagonistic toward officers. Part of her solution is reportedly lowering the standards for recruiting officers.

She also wants to “diversify” the police department. Her proposals are considered “dangerous” by LAPD union leaders as some aspiring officers are extremely unfit for the job.

“That’s just a recipe for disaster,” Tom Saggau, who is a spokesperson for the Los Angeles Police Protective League, told the LA Times. “We think lowering standards is a dangerous precedent.”

He told the media outlet that those who fail to qualify as a new hire don’t “possess the mental fitness or the physical fitness ability to be a police officer. If you have police officers that can’t make minimum qualifications or attained minimum standards, for instance, there are recruits that have been in the academy that just can’t score the minimum requirements for a physical fitness test.”

“One hundred is the maximum score, 50 is acceptable. There are folks that are scoring under 10. That’s just dangerous,” Saggua stated.

“I know that that is ambitious, but I think it needs to happen,” the mayor proclaimed when she announced a new budget providing for the additional officers earlier in the year.

Other goals by Bass for the LAPD include plans to focus on reducing the number of police-involved shootings and eliminating “officers associated with right-wing domestic extremist organizations.”

The last ten police academy classes averaged 30 graduating officers, according to the LA Times, and are far from meeting the mayor’s goal.

“The mayor’s No. 1 job is to keep Angelenos safe,” a spokesman for the mayor wrote. “She remains concerned about the number of officers retiring and her budget reflects that concern.”

Sandoz defended her Facebook post but stated that her comments were primarily directed at those who have already decided to leave the department.

“My comments were part of a larger online thread about officers who stated they already decided to leave the LAPD,” she told the LA Times. “And I stand by every word I wrote to those who decided or are strongly considering leaving the LAPD for another agency.”

Later, Sandoz sent an email to the LA Times claiming that she hopes the department makes “improvements” and that officers choose to stay with the LAPD.

She went on to comment that the “criteria I advise officers to evaluate when they are choosing to work for another agency is, in many respects, the same criteria officers are using to determine if they are going to stay with the LAPD.”

LAPD chief Michel Moore has previously commented that he believes the struggles of the police department are linked to a perceived hostility towards police since the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020. He also pointed out that there is a major backlog of background investigations that keeps recruits waiting months before they can enter the academy.

The police department is so desperate for new recruits it is planning to hand out $15,000 signing bonuses and other incentives to lure in new officers.

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