NYPD makes fitness tests easier after increased retirements

Fat, weak and slow is no way to become a cop – or is it?

The NYPD dramatically relaxed the fitness requirements to become a city cop amid a record wave of retirements that has the brass desperate for warm bodies to fill the ranks, The Post has learned

The department replaced a faux 6-foot wall inside the Police Academy gym with a chain-link fence that’s easier to climb, according to official recruiting videos posted online.

The move came after a cellphone was used last year to record a series of out-of-shape, wannabe cops laughably trying – and failing – to get up and over the wall.

A copy of the compilation video obtained by The Post shows one applicant hanging his head in shame following two futile attempts.

The “Barrier Surmount” is one of six tasks that comprise a physical exam known as the “Job Standard Test” that would-be cops have to pass before beginning six months of training at the academy in Flushing, Queens.

The NYPD fitness test was made easier as a result of increased retirements.
Prospective cops previously had to scale a 6-foot wall as part of their physical fitness test.

And to boost the passing rate, the 3-minute, 28-second time limit that was in place in 2019 was extended by nearly a full minute – to 4:28 – last year, according to the NYPD recruiting videos posted on YouTube.

One disgusted cop said “it’s really not hard” to pass the fitness test, which includes repeatedly running up and down a six-step staircase and using a weight machine that’s supposed to mimic struggling with a suspect.

“If you can’t pass the basic requirements for being a police officer, you shouldn’t be one,” the veteran cop said.

In addition to easing the Job Standard Test, the NYPD appears to have scrapped a rule that required recruits to run 1.5 miles in 14:21 or less to graduate from the academy.

That qualification is posted on an official web page that features the 2019 video detailing the JST, but it’s not part of another that features last year’s video.

Sources said that the 1.5-mile run hasn’t been officially eliminated but that top brass were considering scrapping it, with one saying, “So many people are retiring in droves and they have to fill these positions.”

This past weekend, The Post reported that more than 2,100 cops have retired or quit the NYPD amid a record-shattering exodus this year, exceeding the 1,535 who left the force during the first six months of 2020, amid the deadly first wave of the COVID -19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, the academy class that graduated on Friday comprised just 561 new cops, a little more than half the 1,009 that sources have said the NYPD was hoping to hire.

The city began taking applications for the NYPD written exam on June 8. The deadline to sign up is July 15, with testing scheduled to start on Aug. 12.

In a prepared statement Tuesday, an NYPD spokesperson said, “Our physical fitness requirements in the Police Academy have been reviewed and approved by [the] The New York State Division of Criminal Justice Service and the NYPD will continue to abide by any guidelines issued by the state. ”

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