Bulgarian Police Mark Professional Day amidst DiscontentSociety | November 8, 2011, Tuesday // 14:01| views
On November 8, Bulgaria marks the 132nd anniversary of the establishment of police force in the country. Photo by BGNES
The Bulgarian Police celebrate Monday the day of Archangel Michael or Michaelmas, their professional holiday and the 132nd anniversary of the establishment of police force in the country.
The professional day of Bulgarian police coincided Tuesday with the decision of some of Interior Ministry's trade unions to declare readiness for mass protest rallies.
The discontent stems from the planned increase by two years of retirement age for police employees.
Deputy Interior Minister, Dimitar Georgiev, countered that the move gives better career chances and more job security to policemen. He, however, pointed out the trade unions' reaction is understandable, saying the changes must be introduced gradually, not in 2012, as planned.
The Head Secretary of the Interior, Chief Commissar, Kalin Georgiev, congratulated his colleagues with the holiday, and stated he supported part of the trade unions' demands – those related to better work conditions.
Meanwhile, other police trade unions say they will not organize protests. The final decision will be made Wednesday.
Bulgarian Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, who is a former firefighter and Chief Commissar, sent a special address to the police employees, expressing his deep gratitude and respect for their work.
"I know this job; I also know your professionalism and character, and wish to congratulate you for the results in the fight against crime and in making our country a safe and secure place to live. We all owe you gratitude for what you are doing for Bulgaria," the PM writes.
The official ceremony takes place in front of the monument of perished policemen in Sofia with a mass, laying of flowers and wreaths, and hoisting of the national colors.
The ceremony includes bestowing awards to police employees for showing courage and professionalism in the line of duty.
As a tradition, on the Day of Archangel Michael the Bulgarian Interior Ministry also publishes the roll of honor of policemen who have died while doing their duty.
The day will be marked in police precincts all over the country.
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