Here’s an excerpt from a December 1993 Globe and Mail article about the excesses of paid-duty policing—a kind of official rent-a-cop service offered by the Toronto Police Service, for which off-duty police officers are paid an hourly wage to stand guard over private and public functions and construction projects:
Police officers in Metropolitan Toronto received almost $9-million in addition to their regular salaries last year by renting their services to private clients.
A long-established practice known as paid duties permits off-duty constables to boost their incomes—in some cases to as high as $80,000 or $90,000—by directing traffic, acting as security guards or escorting funeral processions.
And here’s the Toronto Star on Sunday:
Last year, 3,047 off-duty cops earned $26.1 million for performing 51,526 jobs ranging from “traffic control” on construction sites to providing security for community events. That’s an increase from 2009 when 3,700 officers picked up 40,919 freelance assignments for a total bill of $24.2 million.
Paid-duty assignments originate from a wide variety of sources, including private organizations, construction companies, utilities and special event organizers, along with city agencies such as Toronto Hydro, the TTC and some city divisions.
So, that’s progress, of a sort. In two decades, Toronto has gone from being outraged over $9 million in payments to off-duty cops, to being outraged about $26 million in payments to off-duty cops.
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