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Police Protest Physical Fitness Policy

Police Protest Physical Fitness Policy

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OGDEN, Utah (AP) -- Ogden police are protesting Mayor Matthew Godfrey's proposed policy requiring they pass every part of a physical fitness test or lose their jobs.

The Ogden Police Benefit Association wrote Godfrey this week, outlined its objections.

The police say Godfrey's plan particularly threatens the jobs of officers who have been injured on the job and some female officers.

Godfrey had proposed that disqualified officers could be transferred to some other city job, possibly with a cut in pay.

The mayor said Wednesday that he has received the association's letter but hasn't studied it yet.

Association members met Sept. 9 and voted 38-4 to reject Godfrey's proposal.

The association's letter said that since 2000, per capita violent crime in Ogden has decreased 6.5 percent and arrests have risen 36 percent for adults and 21 percent for juveniles, despite there being no increase in the ratio of officers to residents.

"Whereas these encouraging statistics are not the result of a proportionately larger force, they must be the consequence of a police department endowed with high morale and access to an ever-increasing reserve of experience and institutional knowledge -- all certain to be greatly damaged by the implementation of your proposed policy," the letter said.

The physical-fitness testing is set to begin in November.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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