The District of Columbia: The Nanny State Run Amok

By October 5, 2006General

Unbelievable story on the front page of the WaPo by Mary Pat Flaherty and Sari Horowitz entitled, “Limited Duty, Full-Time Pay,” about how DC police who claim on-the-job injuries receive “rare, generous benefits that can act as an incentive to prolong their time away from work.”

We don’t doubt that police work is a hard and dangerous job, but the cases profiled here really do shock the conscience. Among other bennies, they collect their entire salary tax -free while off with injuries.

One particularly egregious case features Camille Senn who went out on disability, citing physical reactions to various “verbal threats” and stress. She stayed home for four years — four years — at full pay, $58,124 — including periodic raises, of course. It’s a wonder she didn’t get a performance bonus, too.

Ultimately, reports Flaherty and Horowitz, “the retirement board declared that Senn’s stress was not caused by her job but that she was permanently disabled for police work.” As a result, she now only collects a paltry $26,000 a year from the Department. “My retirement should be tax-free, too,” says Senn. Of course! Why not?

Remember we noted in this space a while ago that in the DC Public Schools, incompetent teaches fired from failing schools get preferential hiring at any other opening in the system.

The wheels are clearly off in the District, a throughly sad state of affairs. We cite it here only as an object lesson. Think of it as a glance into the abyss of what we might become if we are not vigilant about preventing the creep of well-meaning laws and with them, the Nanny State.

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  • blogger's apprentice says:

    —Among other bennies, they collect their entire salary tax -free while off with injuries.

    Not nearly as bad as an Amtrak employee!