MEMPHIS, TN – The mayor of Memphis said billboards put up by the Memphis Police Association are hurting the city’s image and calls the message, “selfish.”
The police union billboards feature the warning, “DANGER: Enter at your own risk; This city does not support public safety,” MyFoxMemphis.com reported.
Mike Williams, the president of the MPA, said the billboards are meant to target city leaders and are about protecting union’s jobs and benefits.
“I think it’s self-centered, I think it’s selfish,” Memphis Mayor A C Wharton said. “I think it has no place in our city.”
The mayor said the signs are driving away visitors and costing people who work in the tourism and hospitality industry, warning it may cost people their jobs, MyFoxMemphis.com reported.
“Our billboards are not aimed at the citizens. They’re not aimed at saying this really a bad, bad place,” Williams said.
Wharton said Memphis instituted a 4.6 percent pay cut to protect jobs, as opposed to issuing layoffs, but police officers want their pay reinstated and Williams said the signs are just the start of the union’s public campaign.
“This can be stopped at anytime,” Williams told MyFoxMemphis.com.
“The mayor has the power to stop it, so if in fact he wants to stop it then he needs to do right by the city employees, and definitely the police officers in this city.”