NYPD Commissioner William Bratton said Monday that the leader of the rank-and-file police officers' union has "lost" his gamble to improve his members' contract terms through arbitration rather than in negotiation with City Hall.
"Are they unhappy about the pay issues? They certainly are," Bratton said of the 24,000-member Patrolmen's Benevolent Association and its president, Patrick Lynch. "That's what's expressed by Mr. Lynch. He rolled the dice and he lost."
Officers have been working without a contract since 2010, and PBA members are enraged at a circulating draft agreement that showed they would receive a 1 percent retroactive raise for each of two years. The labor group held a massive Upper East Side rally Thursday criticizing arbitrator Howard Edelman as "compromised" and citing ever-lowering department morale.
Bratton said the NYPD is doing an "awful lot for morale," including supplying officers with more bulletproof vests and crime-fighting technology such as smartphones and increasing opportunities to join the Strategic Response Group and other prestigious units.
Lynch in a statement expressed his continued displeasure with the administration.
"The mayor and police commissioner are confusing high-tech gadgets that improve job efficiency and safety equipment, that they are required to provide by law, with things that improve morale," he said. "Our members' morale is at rock bottom because nothing has been done to help them feed their families, pay their rent or put shoes on their children's feet."
De Blasio's administration has negotiated contracts for 84 percent of the city's workforce including 11 uniformed officers' unions.