Village of Robbins officers 'fed up' over lack of resources, low pay and safety concerns: union

Cook County Sheriff's Office deputies called in to help patrol area

ByAlexis McAdams WLS logo
Sunday, October 3, 2021
Robbins police shortage after officers 'fed up,' union says
The Village of Robbins police union says more than a dozen police officers have resigned or just called out for the foreseeable future.

ROBBINS, Ill. (WLS) -- Cook County sheriff's deputies have been called in to help patrol the village of Robbins after many officers just did not show up to work Saturday.

The south suburban community is trying to operate without the majority of its public safety team, according to officials.

"(It's) something that has to be addressed, and will be handled when we sit down with the union," Mayor Darren Bryant said.

The village police union said more than a dozen police officers have resigned or just called off for the foreseeable future, citing a lack of resources, low pay and major safety concerns.

"It has gotten to the point now that officers are fed up," Robbins Police Department Union President Detective Hurman Mathis said.

Mathis has worked with Robbins PD for two years, and said he was just placed on leave by the village during the negotiations.

"We have several safety issues; we have a manpower issue where we do not have enough people to work on the shift. Also, issues with the paychecks, where we are not getting the correct pay, or less," he said.

The mayor of Robbins has not even been in office for six months and is now facing serious turmoil with the police and fire department, who are wanting to re-negotiate contracts.

However, the village said it is working with the union to get all officers and fire crews back on the clock.

"I understand where they are coming from, and to keep our people safe, they need the resources," the mayor said.

As the clock continues to tick, Cook County sheriff's deputies were called in to patrol.

This comes as some officers said they are looking elsewhere for full-time work and better compensation.

"My last paycheck, I had 146 hours on it for two weeks. So, we are trying to put in and contribute but at some point, they need to do something," Mathis said.

"I ran on a platform where, ideally, we want a full-time service," Mayor Bryant said. "We want full-time officers and firefighters to keep everyone safe and generate revenue for our town."

Right now, Robbins is appointing a new police chief, and looking at its budget to see what resources it can pull in to get the departments back on track.