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Old 06-14-2013, 21:55   #1
ClydeG19
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Anyone involved in hiring boards at your dept?

As the saying goes, you know you're a cop when you don't know how not to be one. I'm exploring the options as far as moving to another state and becoming a cop there. My wife would like to return to PA simply to be closer to family. I have some reservations...namely because I have an immune disorder which was diagnosed after I started at my current dept. For specifics if you'd like, look up common variable immunodeficiency disorder. I'm thinking that would scare other agencies away from hiring me if I tried to lateral. It's well managed with medication (very expensive meds), but I'm not sure I would even get past the application stage because of it.

I'd like to gauge whether I'm wasting my time in applying and my current dept is the only shot I have at being a cop or if there's a good chance things would work out. I know that all things being equal, a pd will take the guy without the medical condition. But otherwise, what do you guys think?
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Old 06-14-2013, 22:49   #2
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Contact the State POST and certifying boards at the States you are interested in for a definitive decision. Others I know and I myself have been given incorrect information when I was an applicant.

Good luck!
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Old 06-14-2013, 23:53   #3
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Been involved in personnel for a while and while you have to undergo a full POST physical in CA, there are laws which protect you, such as HIPAA and other medical privacy laws. Also, unless it involved your proficiency in some way which affects your performance and you don't pass the tests, there's not much they can use against you and if they did, it's discrimination based on medical issues, as protected by the American with Disabilities Act.

There are tons other issues involved when medical decisions are used in hiring, but it's late and I had a full week of dealing with this stuff... of course, the department can wash you out for other reasons and claim it's unrelated to your medical situation, but that goes for anything anyways and you know that. They will hire who they want to hire, but to base it strictly on medical reasons is a sure way to lose big in a lawsuit.
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Old 06-15-2013, 00:44   #4
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I’m retired now but I was heavily involved in hiring for around 10 years.

Unfortunately, I can only give you a partial answer and point you in a certain direction.

As Lawman800 pointed out, the Americans With Disability Act (ADA) provides some protections from unlawful discrimination against persons with disabilities and mandates that employers provide reasonable accommodation. However, the key phrases here are “unlawful” discrimination and “reasonable” accommodation. Discriminatory practices are allowed if a person’s condition is such that it significantly interferes with the performance of their job. Similarly, a lot of requests for accommodation wind up creating an unreasonable burden for an employer and are not acceptable within the law.

I understand patients with this condition don't produce sufficient antibodies in response to exposure to pathogens. As a result, the patient's immune system fails to protect them against common bacterial and viral (and occasionally parasitic and protozoan) infections. The net result is that the patient is susceptible to:

Recurring infections involving the ears, eyes, sinuses, nose, bronchi, lungs, skin, GI tract, joints, bones, CNS, parotid glands, etc. These infections respond to antibiotics but recur upon discontinuation of the medications. Bronchiectasis can occur from severe and recurrent lung infections.


Viral infections that usually respond to antivirals.

Enlarged lymph nodes, Enlarged spleen.

Fatigue.

Asthma.

Abdominal pain, Bloating, Nausea, Vomiting, Diarrhea, Weight loss.

Malabsorption.

Helicobacter pylori, Giardiasis, Cryptosporidiosis, Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, etc.

Atrophic gastritis with pernicious anemia and achlorhydria.

Nodular lymphoid hyperplasia of the GI tract.

Villous atrophy of the small intestine, which can resemble celiac disease.

Inflammatory bowel disease.

Aphthous stomatitis.

Increased intestinal permeability.

Polyarthritis, or joint pain, spread across most joints, but specifically fingers, wrists, elbows, toes, ankles and knees. In some cases, Mycoplasma can be the cause.

Children may show a "failure to thrive" - they may be underweight and underdeveloped compared with "normal" peers.

Candida infection of the lungs.

Anxiety and depression, usually as a result of dealing with the other symptoms

The potential risk this poses by a new employee is considerable, not only in terms of the employee’s ability to do the job, but the potential risk it poses for his safety, the safety of those he is paid to protect, and potential worker’s compensation and disability retirement costs. In many states, if an existing illness or injury is made as little as 1% worse by a job related event, worker’s compensation laws can make the employer liable to pay for treatment of the entire condition for the rest of the employee’s life.

I would suggest you take a look at http://lib.post.ca.gov/Publications/InfDiseases.pdf It is one of the medical screening manuals used by the state of California in hiring its peace officers. This one deals with hiring practices for applicants with AIDS. I am in no way comparing your condition with AIDS. However like you, AIDS patients do not produce sufficient antibodies. This manual explains how not having sufficient antibodies can impair the ability of law enforcement officers to do their jobs and the unreasonably negative impact it can have on their employing agency. It will at least give you an idea as to what you are up against.

I am by no means telling you not to go for it, but I suspect you may have an uphill battle.
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Old 06-15-2013, 01:27   #5
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Here, I can tell you that it would depend in large part on the pension system in which you participate. My current agency's pension is also the disability system (we do not contribute to Social Security), and therefore the pension requires a more involved physical exam, cardiac stress test, etc, etc, etc than is required to be a peace officer in this state. The other large pension system's members DO contribute to Social Security, and therefore they just need a doc to sign off on them being "able to perform the duties of...", which is rarely an issue.

In my pension system, you could receive a conditional offer, satisfy all conditions, and your physical could be denied by the pension board and you would be done. In the second system, you could have a significant, undetected heart defect that might have been discovered by the other system, and still be a cop.
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Old 06-16-2013, 18:47   #6
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I too would be curious of the glock talk concensous on this issue. I am sort of in the same boat as the op and wonder how it would influence my career down the road...
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Old 06-17-2013, 13:30   #7
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I wouldn't worry so much about being able to pass a physical as why would you WANT to??? I understand wanting to be productive and wanting to be in LE, but when you deal with a virtual petri dish of human filth on a daily basis and risk contact with bodily fluids from a person with every communicable disease known to man, having an autoimmune disorder is not a good thing. Take your retirement and find another field of work if you must or just enjoy the good life. No job is worth that kind of risk to your health or your life.
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Old 06-17-2013, 14:03   #8
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How much time do you have invested at your current agency? in your retirement system?

Given your situation, I would would stick it out where you are, if you were me. If you are frustrated/bored in your assignment, it's a lot easier to promote or find a different aspect to get into where you are, than to start over somewhere else (that's if they take you).
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Old 06-17-2013, 21:36   #9
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He could apply for a medical retirement. Much depends on the findings of the hiring agency's physician and the employee's physician. If there is a debate, the decision is sent to a third party physician for a determination. If the agency wants to release him, he'll get the retirement.

The problem is that once he accepts retirement, then he is gone and effectively banished from a career he cares for. Arizona policing is not like NYC, Boston, or elsewhere on the East coast. Once done, no one is going to offer him a job in LE, care about him and his family, and perhaps he'll be working at Home Depot or elsewhere if he is lucky.

No one definitively knows what federalized health care is going to bring and because of this, hiring is very problematic in the private sector now.

Arizona doesn't have investiture until the ten year anniversary and one must wait until 62 to begin receiving payments.
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:29   #10
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Quote:
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He could apply for a medical retirement. Much depends on the findings of the hiring agency's physician and the employee's physician. If there is a debate, the decision is sent to a third party physician for a determination. If the agency wants to release him, he'll get the retirement.

The problem is that once he accepts retirement, then he is gone and effectively banished from a career he cares for. Arizona policing is not like NYC, Boston, or elsewhere on the East coast. Once done, no one is going to offer him a job in LE, care about him and his family, and perhaps he'll be working at Home Depot or elsewhere if he is lucky.

No one definitively knows what federalized health care is going to bring and because of this, hiring is very problematic in the private sector now.

Arizona doesn't have investiture until the ten year anniversary and one must wait until 62 to begin receiving payments.
What's more important, your career or your life/health? I know there's people out there whose career is everything to them and it's all they know and all they want for themselves.

I work to pay my bills and have the life I want. I don't live to work. I pity those who do.
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Old 06-18-2013, 16:37   #11
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What's more important, your career or your life/health? I know there's people out there whose career is everything to them and it's all they know and all they want for themselves.

I work to pay my bills and have the life I want. I don't live to work. I pity those who do.
I concur and it is why I quit when I did. This board is the only contact that I have with LE any more.

Sadly, there are plenty of cops and some here in CT that believe policing is the be all-end all lifestyle. They cannot conceive of other jobs or life options for themselves. They talk about retirement in general terms and yet, never plan for it.

They do not want to face the reality that one day, they will walk in the front door of the station for the last time as a cop, only to leave as a private citizen. It scares the hell out of them.
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:04   #12
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I concur and it is why I quit when I did. This board is the only contact that I have with LE any more.

Sadly, there are plenty of cops and some here in CT that believe policing is the be all-end all lifestyle. They cannot conceive of other jobs or life options for themselves. They talk about retirement in general terms and yet, never plan for it.

They do not want to face the reality that one day, they will walk in the front door of the station for the last time as a cop, only to leave as a private citizen. It scares the hell out of them.
Yes, I know many lifers who have past the point of diminishing returns and are working for free or negative money because they maxed out their retirement a long time ago.

They can't conceive of life without the job and even after I did the math for them, they can't give it up. I will admit it does become a part of you and you can't imagine life without it but I know I can walk away... and have... and it is what it is and life goes on.

Had a good talk with my buddy about it, he's reaching that point soon... and we both agree, the earlier you collect retirement, the better. It's one more check you get back from them that you wouldn't get otherwise.
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Old 06-19-2013, 17:26   #13
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I will say it is tough to leave when it ain't on your terms. I also found that getting hired by another agency is very difficult. I had19years in with no suspensions and decent qualifications and thought another agency would snatch me up. I was wrong. The agencies will choose who they want and use all kinds of factors to make a decision.

I got hired on finally with another agency and it was so messed up, I actually left and went back to work for the state doing investigations. I'm not commissioned but the prior agency gave me my retirement card so it really doesn't matter.

Consider leaving carefully. I don't think it would be very easy for you to get hired on in PA and I base that on my experiences. That said, there is life past LE and you can do something else if moving to PA makes sense.

Good luck.
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Old 06-19-2013, 17:42   #14
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I have 6-1/2 years left and already I've been fantasizing about my retirement!

What's also sad is cops don't utilize their career to prepare for their retirement. If there's something you like to do which requires additional education, then go to school for it while you're a cop (yeah, I know. Easier said than done!).

And many retired cops end up doing private security. Money is not bad. Where I'm at, it's from $25 an hour up to $45 an hour (that what I was told for uniformed, private security at Federal courthouses, .gov buildings, etc...). But a lot of it is part time work. And you work at their beck and call, or they don't call you back.

Me? When I retire, I'm going to be fully retired!
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Old 06-20-2013, 04:28   #15
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I agree. Many people are workaholics and end up coming back part time after retirement. Or staying as a reserve or going into private security. Screw that. When I'm out, I'm out. I may get another job, but it certainly wouldn't be in this field. About as close as I'd get would be working for an insurance company or bank doing investigations. But I highly doubt I'll do that if I put in 28 years here and retire at 55. Too many other jobs out there to do investigations/security work.
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Old 06-20-2013, 09:04   #16
ClydeG19
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I'm 33 and have 5 years in the system. My condition is well managed and I work for a small college pd. It's not my ideal dept for upward mobility or level of activity, but not the same working conditions (risk to my health) as a municipal dept. I think I would have a hard time getting medical retirement given my condition has not effected my ability to do this particular job. Thanks for the input, everyone.

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Old 06-20-2013, 09:33   #17
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Where I'm at, it's from $25 an hour up to $45 an hour (that what I was told for uniformed, private security at Federal courthouses, .gov buildings, etc...).

The 'blue jackets' make good money, but unless you are a retired Fed with connections to the US Marshal in your District, you aren't likely getting hired to run a metal detector at the US Courthouse.

Those jobs are political plums.
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Old 06-20-2013, 19:57   #18
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The 'blue jackets' make good money, but unless you are a retired Fed with connections to the US Marshal in your District, you aren't likely getting hired to run a metal detector at the US Courthouse.

Those jobs are political plums.
You're right about needing connections. The guy I was speaking with is a retired local SWAT and he did say something about his brother introduced him... He also said they take you on on a part time basis for about a year or so, before deciding to hire you full time.
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