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10 Jul, 2020 15:13

‘Emotional beatdown on daily basis’: 150 Minneapolis police officers seek disability for PTSD over BLM riots

‘Emotional beatdown on daily basis’: 150 Minneapolis police officers seek disability for PTSD over BLM riots

At least 150 Minneapolis police officers have begun seeking duty disability because of post traumatic stress following the George Floyd protests and riots, their attorney has revealed.

The attorney who handles disability claims for the Minneapolis police, Ron Meuser, told FOX 9 that 75 officers are already under doctors’ orders not to return to work and are being treated for symptoms consistent with PTSD.

The ongoing unrest seems to have broken the already exhausted police force as most of the officers seeking disability are veterans of the department with 16 to 23 years of experience. “The symptoms didn’t just start six weeks ago. They’ve been dealing with symptoms for decades,” Meuser said. The officers’ stress reached a tipping point when protesters breached the Third Police Precinct building and set it ablaze at the end of May.

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“They did not feel they were going to come home,” he said. Some officers began saying ‘goodbye’ to their families, others even began saving a bullet in order to take their own lives and avoid being beaten to death, he added. The city’s police have felt abandoned both by local officials and the community as a whole.

Meuser described the officers’ experience as an “emotional beatdown on a daily basis.” 

“I’ve looked them in the eyes, not one of them is attempting to get out of working. Every one of them, to a man and woman, said ‘I never thought I would be leaving this way,’” the attorney added.

Minneapolis Councilwoman Linea Palmisano said that such a large number of officers seeking disability could be a “significant expense” to Minneapolis. As recently as June, the city had received 17 workers’ compensation claims related to PTSD.

The protests and riots distressing the police were sparked by the death of George Floyd, who suffocated after a Minneapolis police officer pressed a knee into his neck for more than eight minutes. Since then, the city’s police have been facing violent clashes demonstrators which shattered both sides’ confidence in each other.

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The United States police are having an unusually stressful time. Last month, a Georgia officer filmed herself having an emotional breakdown over experiencing paranoia while ordering food. She was unsure if the food had been tainted by anti-police conspirators. The video went viral with some people sympathizing with the officer and others making light of her feelings.

The woman’s anxiety had been provoked by speculation that Shake Shack employees had poisoned milkshakes ordered by several NYPD cops. 

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