Underwood blames officer retirement on low morale – U.S. Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-Illinois) insists all the recent anti-police rhetoric across the state can’t be viewed as a factor in the rash of police officers now leaving the force.
Instead, during a recent appearance on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, Underwood blamed the rising departures on low morale and leadership within the department.
When asked about a growing number of officers feeling like public officials don’t “have their backs,” Underwood insisted “it’s not about politics” and the “real issue is around policing morale.”
“Underwood added “their inability to recruit good officers” and law enforcement’s “image around the country is one that it will take some deep reflection within the leadership of these law enforcement agencies to try and figure out how they can help recast this image of law enforcement.”
The National Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) recently revealed ambush-style attacks on police have risen 91 percent from 2020.
As for the mass exodus, a study conducted by the Police Executive Research Forum, a Washington policy institute, found over a yearlong period beginning in April 2020 police “retirements were up 45 percent and resignations rose by 18 percent.
FOP officials contend much of the blame rests at the feet of politicians.
“As violent crime surges across America, some politicians and some in the media are gaslighting the public into thinking the police are the problem,” the group recently tweeted.
Democratic lawmakers Rep. Cori Bush (D-Mo), Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) have made various calls for police to be abolished, defunded or dismantled.