Disability Fund a One-Way Door to Workers
The city of Portland treats injured police and firefighters like damaged goods.
The Police and Fire Bureaus do little to find them light-duty jobs, even if they are capable of working. The bureaus wipe them from rosters and label them "medically retired" well before they are eligible for a pension. In some cases, the city sends their retirement badges to them by courier.
"I was so utterly crushed by kind of being kicked out of the family," said John Hash, a police officer who's been on disability since 1992 and recently returned from National Guard duty in Iraq. "Leaving the bureau and having to start over was more damaging than anything that happened while I worked for them."