'Black labs matter' photo in SFPD union newsletter causes controversy

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- An ad at the back of the San Francisco Police Officers Association Journal is drawing harsh criticism from the community as many people are saying it's insensitive to Black Lives Matter.

It wasn't the San Francisco POA journal front page headline that's making headlines, rather the August 2016 Journal End Point as it shows a picture of a black lab wearing a sign that says "black labs matter" next to a picture of a yellow lab wearing a sign that says "all labs matter."

Alongside the picture were the words: "Maybe it's time we all just sit back and tone down the rhetoric."

"Insensitive, it was de-humanizing and I was appalled once again at the conduct and the actions of San Francisco Police Officers Association," President of Officers for Justice Peace Officers Association Yulanda Williams said.

"2016, right now what's going on in San Francisco, across the United States nothing is funny about that," SFPD NAACP Vice President Shawn Richard said.

The POA told ABC7 News it has no comment about the ad.

"I talked to the sergeant of arms of the POA and he was very apologetic," Richard said.

"I guess it caused me to say 'okay what message were they trying to send?"' San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee said.

Retired San Jose Police Officer Ron Martinelli, M.D., had this take: "Simply the law enforcement officers pointing out that there needs to be less polarization in this country between the races and between the communities and law enforcement," he said.

"I probably would have chosen a little different path," Lee said.

"We need to be a little bit more sensitive about these things," Williams said.

The ad says a POA friend and supporter shared the picture with the journal.
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