Alyson, the wife of a Memphis police officer, says her husband supports their family and community daily, so she wanted to show that she supported him.
"It doesn't matter what the day is, what the night is, he's going to protect you because that's his job. That's the oath he took," she says, "I just hope that they'll start to listen to us, to the community; the community needs to speak up for us too."
Police officers traded in their uniforms for signs Saturday afternoon, all in part of the Memphis Police Association's "Wake Up Memphis" campaign to raise public awareness about the proposed cuts to police pay and benefits by city officials.
"If they continue to do more to the police officers, take benefits away, increase insurance, then you're going to lose more police officers and it's going to be hard to attract and recruit quality police officers," says Memphis Police Association President Michael Williams.
In order to balance the city's budget, elected officials proposed cuts to Memphis police and emergency responders' benefits and paid time off; this on top of a 4.6 percent pay cut they took last year.
"I just learned that they gave $5 million to the arts in January. But they keep saying they don't have money," says Williams.
Warren says, "We are all brothers and sisters and the way I see it, we may not always agree, we may bicker, we may quarrel, however, we all stand behind each other and family stands up for family."
Citizens stopped by the rally to donate money toward the Memphis Police Association's cause; the group said they were not receiving money but giving information. In the pamphlet they passed out, the group says while they understand money needs to go to redevelopment, taxpayer dollars deserve to go to public safety.
"We want the citizens to come out of this. We want the citizens to become aware of what's going on and stop just allowing things to happen and you don't say anything," says Williams.
WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
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