A Brief History of the Fraternal Order of Police
In 1915, the life of a policeman was bleak. In many communities they were forced to work 12 hour days, 365 days a year. Police officers didn't like it, but there was little they could do to change their working conditions. There were no organizations to make their voices heard; no other means to make their grievances known.
This soon changed, thanks to the courage and wisdom of two Pittsburgh patrol officers. Martin Toole and Delbert Nagle knew they must first organize police officers, like other labor interests, if they were to be successful in making life better for themselves and their fellow police officers. They and 21 others "who were willing to take a chance" met on May 14, 1915, and held the first meeting of the Fraternal Order of Police. They formed Fort Pitt Lodge #1. They decided on this name due to the anti-union sentiment of the time. However, there was no mistaking their intentions. As they told their city mayor, Joe Armstrong, the FOP would be the means "to bring our aggrievances before the Mayor or Council and have many things adjusted that we are unable to present in any other way...we could get many things through our legislature that our Council will not, or cannot give us."
And so it began, a tradition of police officers representing police officers. The Fraternal Order of Police was given life by two dedicated police officers determined to better their profession and those who choose to protect and serve our communities, our states, and our country. It was not long afterward that Mayor Armstrong was congratulating the Fraternal Order of Police for their "strong influence in the legislatures in various states,...their considerate and charitable efforts" on behalf of the officers in need and for the FOP's "efforts at increasing the public confidence toward the police to the benefit of the peace, as well as the public."
From that small beginning the Fraternal Order of Police began growing steadily. In 1917, the idea of a National Organization of Police Officers came about. Today, the tradition that was first envisioned over 90 years ago lives on with more than 2,100 local lodges and more than 325,000 members in the United States. The Fraternal Order of Police has become the largest professional police organization in the country. The FOP continues to grow because we have been true to the tradition and continued to build on it. The Fraternal Order of Police are proud professionals working on behalf of law enforcement officers from all ranks and levels of government.
A. The Fraternal Order of Police is the world's largest organization of sworn law enforcement officers, with more than 325,000 members in more than 2,100 lodges. We are the voice of those who dedicate their lives to protecting and serving our communities. We are committed to improving the working conditions of law enforcement officers and the safety of those we serve through education, legislation, information, community involvement, and employee representation. No one knows the dangers and the difficulties faced by today's police officers better than another officer, and no one knows police officers better than the FOP.
A. The Fraternal Order of Police is comprised of over 325,000 regularly appointed or elected and full-time employed law enforcement officers of the United States, any state or political subdivision thereof, or any agency.
A. The Fraternal Order of Police is a full service member representation organization. The membership of each local lodge determines the services that are provided by his/her local lodge. The members of each State Lodge determine what services are provided by the State Lodge. The National Fraternal Order of Police provides a wide variety of services.
A. If you are a regularly appointed or elected and full-time employed law enforcement officer of the United States, any state or political subdivision thereof, or any agency, then you can become a member of the Fraternal Order of Police. If you are a family member of a Fraternal Order of Police member you may join the FOP Auxiliary http://www.fop.net/about/auxiliary/index.shtml. If you are a supporter of Law Enforcement you may join the FOP Associates
http://www.fop.net/about/associates/index.shtml. Please contact your local Fraternal Order of Police lodge who will assist you through the membership process.
A. The National Fraternal Order of Police does not conduct telephone solicitations. However, some State and local FOP lodges do. If you have a question about a telephone call you received requesting that you make a donation to the FOP, please contact the local FOP lodge in your area or the FOP State Lodge in your state.