Police cadets will now direct traffic, slashing OT pay for officers at stoplights
Police cadets will take over much of the job directing traffic on city streets, drastically cutting the cost to manage the operation.
A deal between the city's executive committee and the Montreal police brotherhood on the matter was revealed Wednesday morning.
In recent years, directing traffic has cost the city $10 million in overtime pay for police officers, most of whom were paid an average of $60 per hour.
The practice was denounced by opposition party Projet Montreal, as well as the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.
“They're well-trained officers. They're armed, they should be out there fighting crimes, not managing stoplights,” said Carl Vallee, Quebec director of the federation.
The police brotherhood, which represents the city's 4,600 police officers, always refused to allow civilians to direct traffic, which would cost a fraction of the price.
The city and the brotherhood signed a new contract last week, considered a major breakthrough.
CTV obtained a copy of that contract, which reveals that part of the deal will allow for police cadets to take over the job of directing traffic.
The city will hire 100 cadets, who are students in police technology, to work year-round.
They will be paid roughly $15 an hour, four times less than their fully uniformed counterparts.
The city's executive committee explained that Montreal police officers will still retain 25 per cent of the job of directing traffic, a compromise with the union, and will take over for the cadets on busier intersections.
“I think this is good news for taxpayers,” said Vallee.