Many of our members are being routinely held over and forced to work mandatory overtime shifts (and have been for more than a year now). In some cases this has become an every other day occurrence. This situation is primarily due to an excessive number of vacancies in our ranks.
Routine forced overtime is an abusive practice that not only harms the officer, but their families as well. For this reason alone, KCDOA has never supported it. We of course understand that as public safety officers we have an expectation to work whenever and wherever needed in the event of a true emergency. The situation we find ourselves in is not an emergency…
Regardless, some officers are being subjected to far more forced overtime than others based on their work assignment. As a result, we’ve been informally working with Detentions Bureau managers as they move to reimplement an updated version of the mandatory overtime computer system. In an effort to minimize the impact on our members, we’ve asked that everyone (except Sergeants) be included in the main rotational list. At this time, we are unsure exactly who will or won’t ultimately be included as it is not our decision.
The last time the mandatory overtime system was used, it was planned as a short term fix. That short term lasted nearly 3 years. We can only hope history will not repeat itself in this case.