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Chicago Police Will Work 12-Hour Shifts During NATO, G8 Summits

By aaroncynic in News on Jan 5, 2012 4:00PM

Chuck Sudo/Chicagoist

In addition to changes to parade ordinances proposed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel intended to clamp down on protests at the May NATO and G8 summits, Chicago will also add 3-1/2 hours to shifts for police officers, the Tribune reports.

The Chicago Police Department plans to switch officers to 12-hour shifts during the summits, freeing up a third of its force. Police Superintendent Gary McCarthy said, “It’s going to cost some money because we’re going to go to 12-hour tours, which means we’re going to be paying out overtime.”

So far, officials have not attempted to estimate the cost, but Emanuel hopes the federal government will foot the bill. The Department of Homeland Security already gave the city $55 million to prepare for the summits.

Fraternal Order of Police President Michael Shields wondered whether the amount of police would be enough. Shields believes demonstrators are a bigger threat to the city than thieves and other criminals and Shields told the Tribune “…these aren’t 14 year old kids running wild downtown stealing iPhones. These are people who travel around the world as professional anarchists and rioters.” Better Government Association executive director Andy Shaw disputed Shields's notion, and Emanuel's proposed changes to the parade ordinance, and tweeted, "If you think you can repress the demonstration, you are inviting a more aggressive protest."