Detroit police officers were protesting wage and benefit cuts to be implemented under a new contract imposed on a number of municipal unions.
Members of the Detroit Police Officers Association and the Detroit Lieutenants and Sergeants Association were rallying Thursday at Detroit City Hall. The officers were joined by Detroit firefighters and other city union workers.
"Back in the early 70s and 80s they called it white flight. Now it's life flight," said DPOA President Joe Duncan. "People are leaving based on the fact that they can't live here. They can't survive here."
Salaries will be cut by 10 percent and employees must come up with 20 percent of their medical costs.
"They've cut down how many engines respond to a run from three to two," said Detroit firefighter Theodore Copley. "They've also browned out or closed about 15-20 engines and truck in the city."
Under a financial stability agreement brokered between Bing and the state, new terms were set after some contracts were allowed to expire June 30. There were no negotiations between the city and unions on the new contracts.
"My message to the city is that we are struggling and we are broke," said Detroit Fire Commissioner Donald Austin. "The mayor is doing the very best he can with the shrinking resources."