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Yellow Vests in Paris. Photo: FWM

French police officers are tired of their working conditions

On the occasion of the 46th act of the movement, French police officers deplored their "physical and psychological fatigue".

Published: September 30, 2019, 9:18 am

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    “Who knows if my bosses will not call me back in an hour to mobilize me on the 46th demonstration of the ‘gilets jaunes’ tomorrow? It has become a classic!”.

    This policeman, who did not know yet whether he would have his weekend free on Friday afternoon, is just one of many members of the police expressing a general fatigue about their working conditions, reports Le Parisien.

    Yvan Assioma from Alliance, the majority police union, denounced the “enormous fatigue” everyone is feeling. “We want it to stop. We are sounding the alarm about the deterioration of our working conditions and the wave of suicides among police officers. We are asking for compensation and recognition,” he said.

    A policeman attached to the Directorate of Public Order and Traffic (DOPC), who was mobilized for events on holidays from 6:30 to 22:30 explained that he was entitled to “only one lunch basket” for his 18 hours non-stop work. It is “a small dish in a tray, crisps, a bottle of mineral water and a fruit stew”.

    He added: “These demonstrations of Yellow Vests have been exhausting, trying, dangerous. It is a physical and psychological fatigue. The administration treats us like pawns. Not to mention that these months of mobilization have hurt our family lives.”

    Another guardian of the peace said he was “suffering from an anti-police feeling”.

    “We feel vulnerable,” he said. “The problem is the staff of the police headquarters of Paris. They do not feel what we have on the ground. They are in their offices to follow the demonstrations with the images of CCTV. For them, it’s like a video game!”

    He also denounced a “pressure” that they all felt. “On the demonstrations, we were forced to verbalize everything, sometimes to the limit of legality. For months now, we have experienced the politics behind all that. We can not anymore”.

    “The fatigue is not with the police’s mission but with the organisation,” insisted the regional secretary of the Alliance trade union in Paris. He said the bosses “do not hesitate to decorate senior officers with medals, but they give the feeling of having no recognition for the peacekeepers”.

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