CHICAGO — Chicago Police Supt. David Brown announced a new policy Tuesday that will limit the number of officers’ days off that can be canceled. This comes one day after an Inspector General’s report that found police brass routinely canceled days off for Chicago police officers.

The top cop released the following statement:

The brave men and women of the Chicago Police Department step up every day, at great personal risk to themselves, to protect the people of Chicago. While our officers work to safeguard this city, we must also put safeguards in place to protect our officers. The health and wellbeing of our officers is a top priority and we have taken steps to ensure they have time to rest and re-energize. 

Effective immediately, all non-probationary sworn members (except those assigned to 4th and 5th watches and members in specialized units) will have no more than one RDO canceled per work week, except during certain operational periods that include Memorial Day, Father’s Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and New Year’s Eve. During these operational periods, sworn members may have two RDOs canceled. These members will also be guaranteed two consecutive days off each police period. 

This policy, which was developed throughout the last several weeks, also requires all sworn members to have a minimum of nine hours between shifts. The physical and emotional wellbeing of our officers remains the top priority of our Department.

Chicago Police Department

On Monday, an analysis was released that found at least 10% of the city’s officers were ordered to work 11 consecutive days or more in just the months of April and May. That was before major summer holidays, events and crime patterns led to additional cancelled days off.

When questioned about the report Monday, Brown appeared to misunderstand its findings.

“There was 1,000 scheduled but the IG’s report said five or six actually worked beyond the ten days – that’s in the report,” Brown said.

The city’s inspector general told WGN Investigates that is not what her report concluded. She said the superintendent appeared to confuse a few examples of officers who didn’t work with the actual number, which has been difficult to quantify. 

“Certainly not all” of the officers worked eleven or more consecutive days, Chicago Inspector General Deborah Witzburg said, “and certainly more than five or six.”

Read the full report here.