Police, Fire unions to rally over contract issues

(New York-AP) -- Thousands of police officers and firefighters
are expected to gather in Times Square at noon today in an attempt
to rally the public to their contract concerns.
They're calling it a "rally for heroes."
Police union spokesman Al O'Leary says the unions wants to --
quote -- "send a message to the city that you need to take care of
the people who protect you."
O'Leary says 14-thousand uniformed officers are upset over
recent reports that a state arbitration panel might sign off on a
two-year contract that could include an increase in work days.
Reports said the contract would also be offering annual 5 percent
raises -- while the PBA is seeking a 23 percent pay hike over two
The officers have been working without a contract since July
31st, 2000.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press.