Mayor Bill de Blasio’s relationship with the leadership the city’s largest police union doesn’t seem to be getting any better.
On Friday, the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association launched a campaign for officers to discourage both the mayor and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito from going to officer funerals, blaming what they argued is a lack of support by the elected leadership.
Asked about the stunt on Monday at an unrelated event, de Blasio lamented the hostile language as unacceptable.
“It’s fine to have differences,” de Blasio told reporters. “That’s what a democracy allows for. But there still has to be mutual respect, and some voices in this city have decided to be divisive.”
PBA President Patrick Lynch bit back and accused de Blasio of being out of touch.
“It is very clear to me that the mayor has no idea of just how angry New York City police officers are at him for his lack of support and for laying decades of society’s problems undeservedly at their feet,” Lynch said in a statement.
The rhetoric between the administration and union has been escalating for months while the two hash out ongoing labor talks for an overdue contract.
Lynch also took a swipe at de Blasio after the mayor spoke about how he raised his son Dante to interact with police, and that raising children of color was different than raising white children.
Union leaders called de Blasio’s comments moronic, with Lynch accusing de Blasio of “throwing [officers] under the bus.”
Lynch also blasted Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams after hearing the political would recognize Staten Island man Eric Garner, who died in what police critics say was a chokehold by an NYPD officer, a tree lighting ceremony.
Adams, a former police officer, invited the union chief to lighting on Monday. A PBA spokesman didn’t say if he would attend. Instead, the union suggested he also recognize officers who died in service since 1999.