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How Six Nurses Made the LAPD Slimmer and Better
Perhaps the oddest story that came out this holiday weekend was the one about the LAPD medical administrator who stepped down from her job because a half dozen of her cohorts felt it was wrong for the LAPD to continue to accept "grossly overweight" new officer recruits.
The controversy stems from a decision by the city Personnel Department to change the standards for police recruits, including a move to raise the maximum body fat allowed for men to 24% from 22%, and for women to 32% from 30%. Body fat — the percentage of a person's body that is not bone, muscle, organs or water — is measured using calipers applied to areas such as the waist, where fat can accumulate. The standards were relaxed two years ago by city bureaucrats after the mayor pledged to add 1,000 officers to the Los Angeles Police Department. But only in recent months — as recruit classes graduated with some heavy-set rookies — did the controversy balloon. - LA Times
On Friday, Deanna Stover, the medical administrator for the Personnel Department, resigned after nurses signed a letter protesting the clearing of recruits who were out of shape. "When the medical services administration decided internally to make this change, it was purely to 'boost' the number of candidates that would pass the exam and address a short-term problem of low pass rates," says the letter signed by six nurses who conduct the [body fat] tests.
"Such an increase would make our department and therefore our 'administrator' appear more effective. This decision was purely self-serving and without consideration of our medical expertise or regard to the long-term fallout to the Police Department in the way of candidates' failures, injuries or potential lawsuits."