Shortly after the Minneapolis Police Chief fired the officer who knelt George Floyd on the neck, and the three other officers who did not intervene was Lt. Bob Kroll, who heads the department`s police union, for a way to get men`s jobs back. « They were dismissed without proper procedure, » he wrote in an email to the union`s more than 800 senior officers who had fled to the public on June 1. Kroll, who was on stage last year with President Donald Trump at a campaign rally, wrote that he was working narcissistically with the defenders of the four officers and labor lawyers to force the boss to rehire them. No matter how long the negotiations take, the fight will not be easy: the union, like police unions across the country, has the priority objective of protecting police jobs. And Kroll, who has called the national protests against Floyd`s death a « terrorist movement, » seems to be keen to support changes that would put his officers at risk of discipline. Chief Arradondo, when asked if he thought Kroll should resign, dodged the question, but said he was in serious discussions with Kroll and that Kroll was aware of his position. « Lt. Kroll was in no way useful form or form to generate the accountability and reform measures we wanted to understand, » Frey told reporters Wednesday. « And if we ignore the elephant in space, we still won`t see the progress needed to be made. » Negotiations with the police union could be a means of achieving substantial changes in the short term, as Council members begin this lengthy process. And in a way, their announcement to offload the department is some kind of opening offer for the bargaining unit – a sign that they are willing to veto anything that has not happened to a full overhaul. « Our progressive reform efforts have failed, » Council President Lisa Bender told hundreds of people on Sunday.
In a telephone conversation with reporters on Monday, she said the police union was « a clear obstacle to change. » Faced with the uncertainty surrounding the negotiations, police chief Medaria Arradondo announced on Wednesday his intention to withdraw from union negotiations.