Police union puts a face on latest commercial

Here’s another commercial from a member of the Hoboken PBA who is on the chopping block: Josue Velez. Officer Velez appeared in uniform at the City Council meeting and spoke but is more impressive in his shorter appearance here. Seeing a vet in uniform talk about his disappointment on a personal level should he lose his job will strike a sympathetic chord in many.

Last night, MSV had an opportunity to speak to several officers by chance as part of an off the record discussion. There’s real emotional upset with officers in town. One who was not facing the loss of his job spoke about the struggles of going to work in the current atmosphere but placing professionalism above all. He recounted the mental transformation he felt when putting on the uniform. As it turns out, his wife just lost her job and he recently bought a home in the heart of town. So even without facing the loss of his job, his future in town is now doubtful. He was reluctant to be critical of other senior officers who elected not to retire calling it a personal decision. Later, he did say after some additional conversation he hoped that would occur to save the jobs of his colleagues.

The Hoboken Police Department has not gone through what may be called right-sizing, reorganization, downsizing or any of the other terms most of us have seen applied in companies where we or loved ones have made part of our working life. It’s not to be overlooked or downplayed. Cutting a layer of the most aggressive, enthusiastic officers will have a human impact on those who remain, not just those who would leave.

The changes are not likely to be reversed by public pressure. Retirements are a real way to put the brakes on the reductions and MSV can confirm there are several in the works. Out of respect, they won’t be named. There are some senior members on the force who have well over 30 years and have already maxed out on their pensions. One Captain is approaching 40 years of service.

The question is what kind of legacy do they wish to leave to their brothers and Josue Velez?

Update 1:15: A reader sent in some additional information on a youthful Mr. Velez.  In no way should this be considered problematic in terms of his service to the country and now in Hoboken as an officer.  It does however show that in some respects, this town is a small world.  The readers have already begun a discussion on this so there’s no point in hiding the reality of the past.   

SWAT trip – good times
Jello shots with a cutie and Mikie Squared
Hoboken Officer Velez now

Hey, I remember her.  Chicks with guns (sigh)

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