It’s tough being a cop. It may get a little tougher if the state of Ohio has its way. There’s a state rule that allows the dismissal of police officers who “consistently exceed weight limits.” Alaska and Massachusetts also have weight rules for their police force.
Six Ohio troopers were removed from duty in 2003, including one who was 71 pounds overweight.
While no officers have been fired in recent years, at least 11 have received verbal or written reprimands this year for weighing too much. Reportedly, one trooper was 48 pounds over his allowable weight, while another was 40 pounds overweight. So, apparently the protest is working, or nobody wants to enforce the rules.
A national organization of law enforcement groups has recommended that agencies include incentives. Some police forces have health programs that give officers time to train and give extra pay or time off for those who lose weight.
“It’s basically being fired, with the stipulation that once you make weight, then you can come back,” Ohio State Troopers Association President Larry Phillips said of the state’s health provision. “They are just simply out the door. No health care, nothing.”
To this I say, frankly… and your point is?
Maybe I’m just in a bit of a surly mood today, but many jobs have rules and guidelines. If you don’t follow them, you can be fired. With no pay or health care.
I appreciate and admire our men and women who patrol the streets. They have one of the toughest jobs in the country. It’s also a physical job, even if they spend many hours in their car or behind a desk. To ask them to have at least a minimum level of health is perfectly reasonable.
June 10th, 2009