A Brevard chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police deleted a controversial advertisement asking for officers involved in violent incidents in Buffalo, NY and Atlanta, GA, to join Florida police agencies. “Hey Buffalo 57… and Atlanta 6… we are hiring in Florida. Lower taxes, no spineless leadership, or dumb mayors rambling on at press conferences… Plus… we got your back! #lawandorderFlorida,” reads the June 6 post made at 1:21 a.m on the Brevard County F.O.P. Facebook page. The post, deleted sometime Monday morning garnered over 2,000 comments and 1,000 shares.
— Christine Zambrano (@powersitesgroup) June 8, 2020
The Fraternal Order of Police is the largest organization of sworn law enforcement officers in the country, representing some 300,000 members across some 2,000 local “lodges.” Critics say the non-profit organization is a major obstacle to policing reform through their advocacy and deep ties to police unions. The President of the Brevard County lodge acknowledged that the post was legitimate and defended its recruiting efforts as well as the actions of the Buffalo and Atlanta police officers involved in the widely condemned incidents. Some of those officers have been arrested and face criminal charges. But Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey distanced himself from the Brevard F.O.P. posts in a statement on Facebook, calling them “extremely distasteful and insensitive to current important and critical issues that are occurring across our country.” Ivey said comments by the organization or its members have no connection to his agency and “do not in any way represent the views of our agency.” The post was later removed.