Being a policeman is not the most dangerous job in Britain. It's not even close to being the most dangerous job. The construction industry, mining, quarrying, fishing and even window cleaning are all professions with many times the risk of work-related injuries and fatalities than policing. Even amongst the emergency services, firemen face far greater risks to health than the police. So as the 'Times' tells us today (no link, £) that 10% of the police we employ are either on sick leave or 'restricted duties' at any one time one smells a very big rat.
Police work-related sickness or inability to work should be no greater than any of the professions that are inherently more risky in occupational health terms, yet it outstrips them by far. It is clear that coppers, with the connivance of their bosses, are faking illness to an extent unheard of even amongst the cosseted ranks of pre-Thatcher dockers or print workers. And it's costing us a small fortune. And let's be clear. It's not swinging the lead, it's not skiving, it's not sick leave; it's theft.