Schools propose retired police officers to protect students, save millions; unions balk

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Hiring retired police officers to keep the peace at schools seems like a no brainer, but one police union is pushing back.

Since the Dec. 14, 2010, school shooting in Newtown, Conn.,  lawmakers and school authorities across the country have been desperate to find ways to protect children from school violence.

But with school budgets already stretched thin, employing full-time police officers isn’t an option for many districts.

So last April, Miami-Dade School Board member Raquel Regalado proposed hiring retired police officers to protect area schools. It was a practical solution that would save taxpayers a bundle when compared to hiring active-duty officers.

Miami’s police unions responded swiftly, saying they “vehemently oppose the idea of placement of retired Miami police officers in Miami Dade schools.”

The Miami Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 20 and the Miami Dade Public Schools Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 133 say the move is “an exploitation of our children’s safety for the sake of political aspirations and cronyism.”

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By Marianela Toledo | Florida Watchdog


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