The layoffs of fire fighters and police in Camden, NJ continues to grab the national spotlight.

Mayor Dana Redd appeared on the Diane Rehm show this week to discuss the massive layoffs.

The show took a “pro city” turn because there was not an official to represent the unions.  But a caller named Tony made an impassioned plea for cities to respect the contracts that were promised to public workers.

He said,” Public employees on average cost less in total compensation of private sector employees. The pension agreements made and promised should be respected and kept just like any other contract… People took those jobs at the time when maybe they could have turned down jobs that paid more because of the pension agreements.”

Take a listen to the show. Tell us your thoughts about the discussion.

Redd says as an elected official she is mandated by law to balance the budget. Camden has a $26.5 million budget gap that it must close.

Redd was a part of a discussion featuring several mayors and how they are dealing with the economic troubles of their cities. Also taking part in the radio discussion were Akron, Ohio mayor Don Plusquellic, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania mayor Linda Thompson, and Oakland, California mayor Jean Quan.

The IAFF is developing a multi-pronged public relations and media campaign to defend our members from the attacks that are coming from all corners on multiple issues. This effort is underway to push back on those attacking our members and this union.  There will be broadcast, editorial and social media components to our campaign, as well as tools for our affiliates to use at the local level.