Oops! One day after top cop promised CPD won’t cancel days off for Labor Day, the department says it will

Just one day after Chicago Police Supt. David Brown publicly stated that the department would not cancel officers’ days off for Labor Day, the department announced that it may, in fact, cancel BOTH days off for officers that week.

After Brown made his claim on Monday, CWBChicago reported that CPD had already distributed two “weekend cancellation matrix” spreadsheets that showed officers would have days off cancelled for Labor Day and other major holidays, including Christmas.

Brown’s backtrack on Tuesday afternoon came in a written statement in which he outlined “safeguards” to “ensure [officers] have time to rest and re-energize.”

But, the statement only promises to give cops two consecutive days off once every 13 weeks.

According to Brown, most cops other than newly-hired probationary officers will have “no more than one” regular day off cancelled each work week “except during certain operational periods that include Memorial Day, Father’s Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and New Year’s Eve.”

Brown’s statement didn’t mention Christmas and Christmas Eve, but a copy of the department’s matrix provided by a source shows cops will have those days cancelled.

Cops will also be given “a minimum of nine hours between shifts,” Brown said.

In late May, after Brown publicly denied that some of the city’s police officers were being ordered to work 11 days in a row, we dubbed him the “Lyin’ King” in a story that included CPD’s own scheduling records to show that cops really were being ordered to work that long without a break.

Now, the Chicago Office of the Inspector General has confirmed our reporting. In a new publication, the IG found that more than 1,000 cops had been ordered to work 11 or more consecutive days during April and May alone. That’s due to the department’s recurring cancellation of days off.

On Monday, Brown again wrongly claimed that “five or six” police officers had worked more than ten straight days. But that’s not what the IG report said. In fact, city inspectors said they couldn’t tell how many of the 1,000-plus officers worked 11 or more days in a row because the CPD’s recordkeeping is a mess. The five specific examples they listed in their report were just that—examples.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com