The Toronto Police Service’s sunshine list reveals that over half of all police employees earned six figures in 2014. In total, 4,125 police and civilian employees are earning $100,000 or more annually; a figure that has Toronto Taxpayers Coalition demanding answers.
“Toronto Police Services take up the biggest portion of Toronto’s overall budget, and salary costs are a big part of that,” said coalition president Matthew McGuire. “With over half of Toronto police service’s staff earning six figures, it’s easy to see that costs need to be reigned in.”
A recent study by Workopolis, Canada’s largest career website, found that the average Ontarians yearly salary is $49,088. The coalition argues that taxpayers who pay the salaries have a right to demand answers and deserve more than “excuses and cop-outs”.
If there’s a silver lining for taxpayers, it’s that the list now includes “paid duty earnings” where officers work off hours for third parties argues Josh Lieblein, Outreach Coordinator for the coalition.
“Other Ontario police forces have long disclosed paid duty earnings, and we’ve been pressuring Toronto police to include these figures for years. Including this information gives the public a clearer picture of the labour costs in the Toronto police budget.”
With Toronto seeing a 42% drop in crime over the past decade, the coalition argues the police budget is a matter of supply and demand economics. “When crime rates drop, police spending should also go down. It’s no wonder that with budgets like this we can’t afford to build essential public transit infrastructure, or repair the crumbling Gardiner” McGuire adds.