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Los Angeles: In a surprise move on Monday, March 11, 2002, the Latin American Law Enforcement Association (“LaLey”) announced that they would not support Chief of Police Bernard C. Parks’ bid to lead the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) for a second consecutive term. Chief Parks, upon hearing of the Association’s decision, expressed disappointment. “When you consider the facts and look at the accomplishments of the LAPD over the last five years, as they pertain to diversity in the organization at all levels by all minorities [not just Hispanics], it is unconscionable for the leadership of LaLey to issue their recent statement,” stated Chief Parks. Chief parks continued, “The facts simply do not support their position.”
LaLey cites the Chief’s failure to implement the Federal Consent Decree as one of the reasons why they do not support his re-appointment.
FACT: The Department has earned two favorable reports from the Independent Federal Monitor, the person tasked by the Courts to monitor and report on the Department’s progress on implementation of the Consent Decree.
Chief Parks stated, “This assertion by LaLey is an affront to the hard working men and women of the Consent Decree Task Force who have been putting in thousands of hours to ensure compliance; who have earned excellent ratings from the Monitor; now to be told by Laley that they are not doing their job.”
Laley cites the Chief’s failure to implement the Hunter/Laley Consent Decree as another reason for their non-support. To support this contention, they offer, “Although there are over 3,000 Latinos in the LAPD . . ., we did not see a meaningful increase in the number of Latinos in the senior command staff and we do not see any indications that it will increase under Chief Parks’ administration.”
FACT: The Hunter/LaLey Consent Decree does not only apply to Hispanics; it also includes Blacks, Asian Americans, and females. Additionally, the suggestion that the Hunter/LaLey Consent Decree applies to “senior command staff” positions is not true. The Decree only applies to officers in the civil service classifications of Police Detective, Police Sergeant, and Police Lieutenant, and paygrade advancements to Police Officer III, Detective II, Detective III, Sergeant II and Lieutenant II. That notwithstanding, a comparison between the number of Hispanic officers in the Department between June 1992 (the year that the Hunter/LaLey Consent Decree was filed with the Courts) and June 2001 reflects that Hispanic officers in the Department increased by approximately 70% (from 1,782 to 3,026). In June 1997 (just prior to Chief Parks taking office in August 1997), there were 29 Hispanic Lieutenants; as of January 2002, that number has grown to 35. In June 1997, there were 181 Hispanic Sergeants in the LAPD; as of November 2001, that number has increased to 248. In June 1997, there were 66 Hispanic Detectives III; as of November 2001, that number has increased to 72. In June 1997, there were 142 Detectives II; as of November 2001, that number has increased to 190.
Interestingly enough, in December 2001, the Hispanic Law Enforcement Administrators (HLEA), the Hispanic staff and command officers association, along with six other LAPD Employee Organizations, signed a letter expressing support for the Chief of Police. It is important to note that all current Hispanic officers of the rank of Captain and above have been, either promoted and/or upgraded, by Chief Bernard Parks. In June 1997, there were six Hispanic Captains; as of January 2002, that number has grown to nine.
LaLey cites the Chief’s failure to “. . .root out and correct the problems that plagued the LAPD under prior administrations” as another reason why they do not support the Chief’s re-appointment. They stated, “the results of his failed policies are evident in his handling of the Rampart situation.”
FACT: This position by LaLey appears somewhat contradictory to their previous position. In fact, in a letter to the Los Angeles Times Editorial Pages, in April 2000, LaLey was one of ten LAPD Employee Organizations who expressed support for Chief Parks’ efforts to rid the Department of corruption and for his handling of the Rampart corruption scandal.
LaLey cites the Chief’s refusal to adopt the compressed work schedule.
FACT: The Department has adopted the Compressed Work Schedule (CWS). As of today, there are 13 LAPD patrol and traffic divisions that are on a CWS. Additionally, a plan is in place to have all of the Department’s patrol and traffic divisions on a CWS by May 2002.
The earlier three-year CWS Pilot Project was disbanded in 1997 by interim Chief of Police Bayan Lewis. Since becoming Chief of Police in August 1997, Chief Parks has articulated many reasons why the Department should not adopt a CWS. These views were also shared by the previous Police Commission, Former Mayor Richard Riordan and the Los Angeles City Council. With input from the current Mayor, the current Police Commission directed the Department to implement a CWS and the Department is complying.
This press release was prepared by Lieutenant Horace Frank, Officer in Charge, Media Relations Section, 213-485-3586.