Borough President Adams calls for meditation training for cops following string of suicides

Chill: Borough President Eric Adams holds a press conference on the steps of City Hall on July 12 to demand meditation training for city cops.
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Borough President Eric Adams climbed the steps of City Hall on Friday flanked by an unlikely entourage of yoga gurus, wellness experts, and police union honchos to demand meditation classes for New York’s Finest amid a rash of suicides.

“The stress and trauma that our police officers face on a daily basis, where they are frequently forced to make life-or-death decisions, are all too familiar,” said Adams, who served as a city police officer for 22 years, retiring with the rank of captain. “Just as we teach police officers how to use a weapon, we should be teaching them how to use mindfulness to manage stress.”

Adams hosted his July 12 press conference after firing off letters to Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner James O’Neill urging them to institute semi-annual meditation courses, arguing that eastern mindfulness techniques aren’t a bunch of hippy-dippy nonsense, but a proven method of providing psychological benefits that translate to happy, high-performing cops.

“Secular meditation and mindfulness-based stress reduction are evidence-based practices that have been scientifically proven to decrease anxiety, depression, hostility, and stress, while increasing attention and focus, ethical decision-making, and even happiness scores,” wrote Adams.

This year, six city cops have taken their own lives, including veteran officers Joe Calabrese and Steven Silks, who shot themselves one day after the other in June.

And the beep — a noted fitness fanatic, who meditates twice each day — said he hopes Brooklyn’s boys in blue won’t let their masculinity stand in the way of his flower-power healing routine, saying there’s nothing manly about allowing your mental health to deteriorate.

“Policing is a macho occupation,” he said. “Meditation and self-help is considered almost a sissy response.”

The Patrolmen’s Benefit Association — a labor union representing officers within the NYPD — threw its support behind Adam’s call for mindfulness training, with President Patrick Lynch claiming it’s never been harder to be a cop and never more important to support first responders.

“The job of a New York City police officer has always been a stressful one, but policing today is more mentally and emotionally taxing than ever before,” said Lynch.

The city has not been idle amid the tragedies, and Adam’s zen-like advocacy comes on the heels of a newly formed mental health task force, which will provide peer counseling at police precinct citywide, as well as training for commanding officers on how to recognize mental health problems among officers.

The beep has been on something of an eastern wellness kick recently, and early this week suggested the city offer prisoners at the Brooklyn House of Detention yoga classes amid a public review process for a mayoral scheme to expand the Boerum Hill holding facility.

If someone you know exhibits warning signs of suicide, do not leave the person alone; remove any firearms, alcohol, drugs, or sharp objects that could be used in a suicide attempt; call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273–8255; and take the person to an emergency room or seek help from a medical or mental health professional.

Reach reporter Aidan Graham at or by calling (718) 260–4577. Follow him at
Updated 10:25 am, July 17, 2019
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Reasonable discourse

Penny says:
Meditation is good, but it’s just a tiny band-aid on a gaping wound. The police are sent into ever more challenging and dangerous situations. They also have to deal with the generalized hatred spewed at them by groups like Black Lives Matter. Their hard work is minimized (or ignored) and they’re collectively punished for any police officer who breaks the rules (even if it’s out of state, a different police organization, or even just an imagined general problem with police). Of course their mental health is suffering.
July 16, 2019, 6:48 am
Local from Here says:
It can be very taxing on a cop's mental state when they're beating minorities and sexually assaulting women in custody. Please help them.
July 16, 2019, 9:27 am
Thurston Morgan Withers IV from The Waldorf says:
From what I gather in my travels around your fair city it appears that the ‘minorities’ are all upstanding citizens of impeccable behavior! I am highly impressed with the spitting techniques, fashion sense and grasp of the English language. What is the lovely music they play? It is played so low it is hard to hear but it appears to rival great classical musicians such as Mozart and Bach. The poetry is Shakespearean! They all have the same name though, something with an ‘N’.
July 16, 2019, 1:34 pm
Thurston Morgan Withers IV from The Waldorf says:
Ni66ers, I really want to say ni66ers. I'm your typical racist who thinks they are being witty by dog whistling the subject. Clever me!
July 16, 2019, 2:53 pm
Hi ho says:
Feminism is the root cause of Western countries problems.
July 16, 2019, 6:21 pm
Thurston Morgan Withers IV from The Waldorf says:
July 16, 2019, 6:30 pm

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