PoliceLink Feedback & Feature Requests >> From the Desk of TheSarge >> Poll: Giving Up Your Life vs. Giving Up Your Job

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Poll: Giving Up Your Life vs. Giving Up Your Job

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Poll: Would you 'preserve' or save the job of a fellow officer / deputy by taking the layoff yourself?

Just_passin__thru_max50

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Posted over 3 years ago

 

As law enforcement professionals, we think nothing of crawling over hot broken glass on a blistering day during a gunfight to save, preserve or protect the life of another LEO or citizen.


Ok, so check this:


Are you willing to take the place of someone else, who's job is in jeopardy? Would you 'volunteer' to take a pending layoff for another officer / deputy to 'save' their job? Would you step up and say, "No, don't lay off Officer Smith... Deputy Johnson. Lay off me instead."


What say ye ?


Pretty huge question, folks. It has already come up in private discussions.


The Guy !
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Csi_squirrle_max600_1__max50

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Rate This | Posted over 3 years ago

 

There are too many factors to make a call on this one.  My dad, who was a steel worker, DID take what was called "reverse lay-off" when he was at the mill.  That meant he took a lay off so the younger guys could work.  He always knew the layoff was temporary and he would be back to work.  The reason he did it was he got the time off and made enough on unemployment to pay the bills.  The younger guys didn't have the benefits built up yet.  I would do something like this in a New York minute.


Now if you are talking about a permanent layoff....Uh, no.  With 23 years in I would not give that up.  Now then again, I may take early retirement to save a job.


It's a really complex question.  I'm looking forward to this discussion.


 


 


 

Cruise_2014_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 3 years ago

 

This is gonna sound strange, but I actually offered myself for a layoff. The truth is I did it because I knew that in NJ the law says that officers who are laid off go to the top of the list for all civil service departments in the state. I was so pissed at my PD I was willing to take a layoff to go elsewhere. At the time, lateral transfers weren't permitted and I was looking at a "grass is greener" situation. I asked to be voluntarily laid off but was told it was not permitted.


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Cruise_2014_max50

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I, too, inquired about early retirement. I have 24+ years. They won't give it to me, either.


PL MENTORING TEAM MEMBER

"Don't underestimate the drawing power of the Garden State." From the film "Dogma"

Trying to stay sane in an insane world...

1979_max50

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Rated +1 | Posted over 3 years ago

 

No, I too had a family to take care of and feel my ability is or was just as good, if not better to serve the community. What I would do is to see if there was a way that we both could keep our jobs. While I might, and probably would take a bullet for my partner, I would not give away my job so he could keep his. At least taking a bullet I know my family would be taken care of.


Now if I were single or had no kids and the other officer was married and supporting a kid, then yes, I would take the hit for him, if I could not work out sometime else.


 

White_shirt_max50

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Rated +4 | Posted over 3 years ago

 

I would only if the laid off officer had a family to support. I am single and live alone so I could pick up the pieces. Last year in Kansas City, Kansas officers were offered a pay increase, However, if accepted, the City would have to lay off 7 or 8 officers. The officers did not accept their raise to keep the others working. A real family.

1979_max50

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uncledennis1 says ...



I would only if the laid off officer had a family to support. I am single and live alone so I could pick up the pieces. Last year in Kansas City, Kansas officers were offered a pay increase, However, if accepted, the City would have to lay off 7 or 8 officers. The officers did not accept their raise to keep the others working. A real family.


 


Now that is what I would try to do. If there is a way to help my brothers to keep their job, I would be willing to do whatever I could, including forgoing a raise and even taking a pay cut if it would save their jobs. Of course I would make damn sure the Mayor didn't have an entourage following him around to make him look good. He would have to give up those people too.


Just_passin__thru_max50

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I can tell you 5 scenarios of which I have seen and heard firsthand.


1. No cut in pay and benefits to veteran officers. The vets said, "Nope, we ain't giving up anything. We don't care if the noobs get laid off."


2. All officers united and tooks cuts to save other officer jobs.


3. (And this is for real): A person pays a veteran to retire so they can backfill their position with getting hired. What do they pay? I have heard anywhere from $10,000 to $30,000+ .


4. A senior officer (or sworn management position) waits until they feel they will see a promotion behind them of their liking AND THEN retire.


5. I have not seen a singular officer/deputy step up and decline employment (layoff) for the sake of someone else's job.


 


The Guy !
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Rated +1 | Posted over 3 years ago

 

I've never been in that position. Although the Navy is cutting back quite a bit.


I'd like to say for another sailor with a family, I'd do anything for. I know in my heart I feel but again, I have not been put in that situation.


This is such an interesting topic.


I think military and police alike pride themselves int he pride and love that comes from serving together.


We may not even like each other, but the mutual respect that we are serving this great country finds military service men and police officers respect their co-workers just for the sense that they stepped up to the same plate we did.


Very good topic Sarge

Clouds_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 3 years ago

 

This is a very difficult question to answer.  I truely do not know.  I have young child and a sick mother to care for.  So off the top of my head I would say no.  But I can't be sure.

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Rate This | Posted over 3 years ago

 

I don't see that happening for me. I am the primary breadwinner, carry all the insurance ect for my family. I have my family to worry about.


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Eagle_and_flag_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 3 years ago

 

Lot of "What if's" can go with this one. If they would let me take an early retirement (even with reduced benefits) or if it were only a short term lay-off, yes; I would do it. I can always find a part time job to supplement my income. I have no children at home to support (although the First National Bank of Dad has been open for business), the Mrs is still working full time and in a matter of fewer years than I care to admit, my Military Retirement will kick in.


Most of our newer guys have young families to support. In this line of work, Family is important!!


In GOD We Trust (All others get searched, then checked through NCIC)

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Robocop33 says ...



No, I too had a family to take care of and feel my ability is or was just as good, if not better to serve the community. What I would do is to see if there was a way that we both could keep our jobs. While I might, and probably would take a bullet for my partner, I would not give away my job so he could keep his. At least taking a bullet I know my family would be taken care of.


Now if I were single or had no kids and the other officer was married and supporting a kid, then yes, I would take the hit for him, if I could not work out sometime else.


 



I agree with what RoboCop33 is saying.. I too have a family and have shown to put my body and life in danger for strangers, and everyone knows I would die for a brother officer. But I have to provide for my kids, and sometimes, its the call from the big wigs who gets the layoffs. Not me, so I would not say take me, not him.  All that because would that officer feed my kids? If not for the kids the wife, then I would think other wise. I would do the job for free, if you done the job for free.. But we don't!


I love each day like its my last! Why do we are have to be so serious?

0930121924_max50

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TheSarge says ...



I can tell you 5 scenarios of which I have seen and heard firsthand.


1. No cut in pay and benefits to veteran officers. The vets said, "Nope, we ain't giving up anything. We don't care if the noobs get laid off."


2. All officers united and tooks cuts to save other officer jobs.


3. (And this is for real): A person pays a veteran to retire so they can backfill their position with getting hired. What do they pay? I have heard anywhere from $10,000 to $30,000+ .


4. A senior officer (or sworn management position) waits until they feel they will see a promotion behind them of their liking AND THEN retire.


5. I have not seen a singular officer/deputy step up and decline employment (layoff) for the sake of someone else's job.


 



If you ever see #5, let me know..


I love each day like its my last! Why do we are have to be so serious?

Just_passin__thru_max50

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36TR says ...



Lot of "What if's" can go with this one. If they would let me take an early retirement (even with reduced benefits) or if it were only a short term lay-off, yes; I would do it. I can always find a part time job to supplement my income. I have no children at home to support (although the First National Bank of Dad has been open for business), the Mrs is still working full time and in a matter of fewer years than I care to admit, my Military Retirement will kick in.


Most of our newer guys have young families to support. In this line of work, Family is important!!


++++++++++++++++++++


Correct, Tim. Family is paramount. Jobs will come and go, but families are forever. Law enforcement is not generally family friendly. Shift work, dangerous work and consuming work leads to weakened family ties if nothing else is going on. But, if your job is at stake, things get additionally dicey.


And also Tim, the 'what if's' is precisely what I was addressing. I kinda knew that there wasn't an easy answer for this one. But it is a  legitimate question. It's one that can sneak up on an employee and 'call you out' as far as your convictions. I find it interesting that we would run to a gun fight but not so much give up job positions. The longer the economy is weakened, the more difficult it is to determine the posture of the rank and file when it comes to seniority and job loss.



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1asteriskshield_ezr_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Sorry, not this kid. Not enough time in service to take a layoff for someone else. Now if they presented a viable alternative (perhaps teaching at an academy while still maintaining certification with higher pay) that would be one thing but to take it to bag groceries? Naw, my family comes first.


You can't cure stupid.

John_groh_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

I have to bump Robo and Uncle Dennis on this one.


If I were single and did not have a family to support I might take the layoff for someone who had a young family.   


In my case I had a family to support so I wouldn't give up my job.


Over the years there were times when Officers were in need and I have given up hundreds of hours of vacation time and had it transferred to them so they would have a pay check.


In one case, we had a young Officer with only about 6 months on the job, he had a wife and young child.  While cutting his lawn he slipped and ran over his foot with a lawn mower.  He had very little sick leave built up so once that ran out he would be without a pay check until he could return to work.  The city allowed us to donate sickleave to his account so that he would continue to get paid.  Everyone on the platoon donated leave time to him until he was able to return to full duty.


In another case, we had an Officer who's son was dieing of cancer and in fact did pass away.  He had used up all of his vacation to be with his son and would not have gotten paid if he took more time.   Again the City allowed Officers to donate vacation time to this Officer and we stepped up again and each gave a hundred or more hours in order for him to continue to receive a pay check.


There have been other times that this has occured and most of the Officers have stepped up to assist.


Sarge I have never seen anyone give up their job so that someone else could keep theirs.

Eagle_and_flag_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

wiseass0282 says ...



In one case, we had a young Officer with only about 6 months on the job, he had a wife and young child.  While cutting his lawn he slipped and ran over his foot with a lawn mower.  He had very little sick leave built up so once that ran out he would be without a pay check until he could return to work.  The city allowed us to donate sickleave to his account so that he would continue to get paid.  Everyone on the platoon donated leave time to him until he was able to return to full duty.


In another case, we had an Officer who's son was dieing of cancer and in fact did pass away.  He had used up all of his vacation to be with his son and would not have gotten paid if he took more time.   Again the City allowed Officers to donate vacation time to this Officer and we stepped up again and each gave a hundred or more hours in order for him to continue to receive a pay check.



In both of those cases, I have to say you work for a great city. I was a young officer (4 years on the department) when my 1st wife was dying of cancer (eventually passing), Several of my fellow officers and detectives tried to donate their time to my account. The city would not allow it due to "pay difference". My Chief at the time stepped up to the plate. He told point blank: "If you run out of time, I will make your duty assignment your house or wherever you need to be. Uniform is optional." He meant it, too. Kudos to your city and your officer.


Oops.Slight Thread Hijack there. (lol) 


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Just_passin__thru_max50

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wiseass0282 says ...



Over the years there were times when Officers were in need and I have given up hundreds of hours of vacation time and had it transferred to them so they would have a pay check.


++++++++++++++++++


Excellent point. I had forgotten about this option. It was so common for our guys to give holiday time/vacation time to other people that is was just business as usual. And, the best part of this giving of time was you could donate it to ANYONE in need, ... sworn or non-sworn. The only required process was the need had to be verified and approved for vacation time donation. We carried quite a few people in their time of need.


I would suggest to any agency to adopt this type of giving for their employees. Make it a 'union' issue if necessary. And, no worries about who would take advantage of it. It boils down to "Burn me once, shame on you. Burn me twice, shame on me." You will quickly know who is tapping the system.


Lastly, our system was set up so the time donations were always given anonymously. The recipient didn't know who was giving them time. So, it usually played out this way: When the recipient was up and running again, they would sent out an All Personnel email thanking everyone them for the compensated time.



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Tlusa_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Sorry, I gott say no. I have a family of my own to take care of. The job market has tanked and I've seen actual rockets scientists applying for jobs as police officers.  It's a crazy world when someone with a masters in aerospace engineering is applying to be a cop. 


Somewhere a true believer is training with one goal in mind...to kill you...will you be ready when you meet?

The comments in this statement in no way reflect to opinions or official standing of any agency, person, or entity other than the person who posted it. In other words mind your own business.

Batman_max600_1__max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

I said no even though I am older then some of the other folks I know I can do a better job. Not being an a$$ just confident in my abilities. My children are grown but I have 2 grandsons and house and vehicle payments, along with insurance and other things to consider. I would take a cut or decline a pay raise to keep on a good Officer though.  


Bad stuff happens to good people, handle it and overcome.
My motto for life:
Let go and let GOD,
Only HE can control everything.

Th_policeavatar_2__max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

There are too many intangibles to give a blanket answer. Layoffs can be time frame limited, short or long, or indefinite. Officers nearing retirement can be offered incentive packages to stimulate turnover. 


In response to SARGE's original question, yes I would if the layoff was a short term deal and I had enough comp/vacation time built up.


""Life is a storm.. You will bask in the sunlight one moment, be shattered on the rocks the next. What makes you a man is what you do when that storm comes"
Alexander Dumas-The Count of Monte Christo

John_groh_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

36TR says ...



wiseass0282 says ...



In one case, we had a young Officer with only about 6 months on the job, he had a wife and young child.  While cutting his lawn he slipped and ran over his foot with a lawn mower.  He had very little sick leave built up so once that ran out he would be without a pay check until he could return to work.  The city allowed us to donate sickleave to his account so that he would continue to get paid.  Everyone on the platoon donated leave time to him until he was able to return to full duty.


In another case, we had an Officer who's son was dieing of cancer and in fact did pass away.  He had used up all of his vacation to be with his son and would not have gotten paid if he took more time.   Again the City allowed Officers to donate vacation time to this Officer and we stepped up again and each gave a hundred or more hours in order for him to continue to receive a pay check.



In both of those cases, I have to say you work for a great city. I was a young officer (4 years on the department) when my 1st wife was dying of cancer (eventually passing), Several of my fellow officers and detectives tried to donate their time to my account. The city would not allow it due to "pay difference". My Chief at the time stepped up to the plate. He told point blank: "If you run out of time, I will make your duty assignment your house or wherever you need to be. Uniform is optional." He meant it, too. Kudos to your city and your officer.


Oops.Slight Thread Hijack there. (lol) 


Kudos you your Chief, it's great to hear that the head of a Department will look out for his Officers.   In my case, I don't know if the City would now do the same as they did back then.  The Mayor is not the same and the attitude has changed alot.  Our Chief may do something like yours did, but I would have to wait and see if that is true.


Me2_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

I chose good question because for me, it all depends of the totality of the circumstances...

Just_passin__thru_max50

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bstites says ...



I chose good question because for me, it all depends of the totality of the circumstances...


 


Uh, huh ???



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bstites says ...



I chose good question because for me, it all depends of the totality of the circumstances...



LOL this isn't the academy, therefore an academy answer isn't required. But if that's the way you want to go..........the totality is this: you either keep your job so you can make money to pay your bills OR take a layoff so someone else can pay theirs. I guess if one had enough time built up then it would be feasible but for some of us, that isn't an option.


You can't cure stupid.

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

ajsdaddyCCSO says ...



bstites says ...



I chose good question because for me, it all depends of the totality of the circumstances...



LOL this isn't the academy, therefore an academy answer isn't required. But if that's the way you want to go..........the totality is this: you either keep your job so you can make money to pay your bills OR take a layoff so someone else can pay theirs. I guess if one had enough time built up then it would be feasible but for some of us, that isn't an option.



I don't think this is only about "giving up your job", I think that other factors can come into play.. as mentioned above, giving up vacation time/comp time, or benefits - pulling together to prevent layoffs.  


"Government's first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives." - Ronald Reagan

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

When I was a newbie, and didn't have a family depending on me, I would have volunteered in a heartbeat to save the job of an officer with a family. But now, I am only 10 years in, have a small child and others who depend on me for money and insurance. I would be more than willing to go without a raise to keep officers or even take a reasonable pay cut (no more than $1.00 an hour). I would hope others would be as willing to sacrifice to help our fellow blue family. But I have talked to some fellow officers in my department and have heard a lot of the 5 things Sarge mentioned. It is super sad but it is reality for me.



~~T_9

Just_passin__thru_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

T_9 makes a distinct point. It's about dependency and who is depending on us.


Ok, so I can make up my own mind what I do. Stand in the gap or take a layoff or job loss to save someone elses' job.


But, aaaah, who is depending on me? Do I have a small child who cannot articulate an opinion about my selfless act of chivalry? Do I have have a spouse who struggles to keep things on the homefront balanced AND take on a full or parttime job. Stay at home parents with children are considered 'fulltime personnel' (in case you hadn't considered that perspective).


Looks like at times we cannot make some decisions based on what I feel I can do. We need to consider who is affected or who is DEPENDENT on any decision I make.


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Fidel_pd_uniform_shot_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

This happened once in our department. The administration threatened lay-offs if some of our senior officers didn't retire. Several 20 plus year officers, though they didn't want to go out in this fashion, made the sacrifice of retiring so that some of the youinger officers could keep their jobs.


 

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