After over a year of deliberation, the Yale Police Department has reached an agreement with the University on a new contract.
A source with knowledge of the department’s internal proceedings told the News that a contract between the two parties was ratified by the Yale Police Benevolent Association, the YPD union, during a vote Wednesday. Union president Rich Simons declined to comment Wednesday night. Negotiations over the contract began in February 2010 and became stalled over issues of payment, disability cap and detective promotion, among others.
The most recent contract officially expired in February 2010, but month-to-month extensions have been the norm until a new contract could be agreed upon. The last contract negotiation began in 2002 and lasted over a year and a half.
The negotiations had been lengthy but routine until April 2011 when the union made several public complaints against the administration, including one that Yale did not allow crimes to be properly investigated — including, potentially, investigations into allegations of sexual misconduct — by filling three vacant detective positions with patrolmen on a temporary ongoing basis.
“We disagree with the YPBA’s claim that any of its union’s members are not well qualified for the police work they are performing,” University spokesperson Tom Conroy said at the time. “The University has the utmost confidence in the professionalism of all its officers and detectives.”
Conroy declined to comment on Wednesday night.
The debate was generally contained to the more than 60 meetings between the two parties, except on two occasions: Parents Weekend and Bulldog Days last year, when the YPBA passed out fliers to students and families warning that “Yale and its host city, New Haven, can at times be a dangerous place.”
The fliers, which Conroy called “alarmist” at the time, showed quotes about New Haven crime from the News and the New Haven Register.
Representatives of the YPD command staff took part in the negotiations since they began last February.
The YPBA is an independent, unaffiliated union that was created in 1988.