The NYPD announced the recent removal of one of its recruitment requirements. The requirement removed for admission to the NYPD was the 1.5 mile run, which is meant to be completed by applicants within 14 minutes and 21 seconds. The removal of the run was implemented by NYPD Training Chief Juanita Holmes, who said it was unnecessary for one to become a competent police officer. Holmes also said it would allow for more people to become police officers, especially women.
“No cop on patrol runs a mile and a half,” she said. “No one’s chasing anyone a mile and a half. Not to mention every day in the gym you’re doing a mile and a half [as part of training].”
The only remaining physical test for applicants is the Job Standard Test which is a multi step course that has to be completed in 4 minutes and 28 seconds. Police departments across the state are required to be in compliance with standards set by the Municipal Police Training Council. The NYPD test is said to be in compliance with these requirements.
“To date, the NYPD is in compliance with the physical fitness standards set by the [state’s Municipal Police Training Council],” the NYPD said. “The requirements to complete the daily physical training and tactics of our Police Academy, including running nearly every day, remains unchanged.”
According to the NY Post, the changes instituted by Chief Holmes proved to be unpopular with NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell and the retired Chief Kenneth Corey. The difference in opinion prompted a meeting with Mayor Eric Adams. Commissioner Sewell was against the idea of scrapping the run, allegedly asking that it remain in place. “The [police commissioner] is in favor of the run,” a high-ranking anonymous police source said. “She didn’t agree with this.” However, Chief Holmes was still able to remove the 1.5 mile run requirement. The Post reported that Holmes did not divulge details of the meeting but that “we no longer have that run in place.”
The removal of the run has been publicly criticized. A police officer claimed that the removal of the 1.5 mile run was lowering the NYPD’s standards. “Cops are already out of shape,” the officer said. “What’s going to be coming in here now?”
Some of the reasons cited for removing the 1.5 mile run was to hire more officers to plug the gap left by officers who were retiring and leaving the NYPD for better opportunities. This gap could be covered by hiring more women, including those who felt discouraged from applying due to the run in the required time. City Councilmember Robert Holden called for men and women to have different times to complete the run.
“If women can’t do it in 14 minutes, make it 15,” he said. “You can change it. You’re gonna get the B-team if you start lowering standards.”
Typically, men and women have different requirements when participating in training for the New York State Police and the U.S. Marine Corps.
This is not the first time the NYPD has removed a fitness test. In July 2022, the NYPD removed the requirement of a wall climb, in which police academy applicants would have to scale up a wall.