Two Harvard University Police officers will soon be laid off by the University, according to the national president of an umbrella police union organization.
Harvard University was not properly paying its police officers, David Holway, the head of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers, alleged Thursday. The issue, which arose during the arbitration, was valued at approximately $500,000, Holway said.
The Harvard University Police Association, the independent union representing Harvard University Police, declined to comment on Wednesday and did not immediately return The Crimson’s request for comment on Thursday.
In a statement released to The Crimson via email, Harvard Police declined to confirm that they would be making layoffs.
“HUPD leaders and the local representatives of our officers are engaged in a substantive conversation about several issues, but both sides have agreed to refrain from discussing the issues publicly for now,” said Chief of Harvard University Police Francis D. “Bud” Riley, according to the statement.
Holway, the International Brotherhood of Police Officer president, said that laying off the two officers would jeopardize the safety of the University community.
“To put the life and safety of the Harvard community at risk when they’re sitting at $34 billion [in endowment value]—that’s wrong,” Holway said.
But in his statement, Riley said that the result of the discussions will not have an impact on campus security.
According to the Harvard University Police Association website, the union represents approximately 62 Harvard University Police Department employees.
The current contract between the union and Harvard expires in July 2012.
“We don’t know why it is that out of the clear blue sky, the University is laying off two police [officers],” Holway said.
Riley said that Holway has not played a role in the discussions taking place between the Harvard University Police Association and the Harvard University Police Department.
“We are optimistic that the conversations will be productive,” Riley said.
—Staff writer Mercer A. Cook can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. —Staff writer Xi Yu can be reached at email@example.com.