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Retired police officers protest rising healthcare costs

By Adam Allington, KWMU

St. Louis, MO. – Retired St. Louis police officers were protesting the rising cost of healthcare outside of City Hall and Police Headquarters Friday.

The retired police officers blame Mayor Francis Slay almost exclusively for the rising cost of healthcare premiums many veterans now pay.

John Cullen is the President of the St. Louis Police Veterans Association. He says the cost goes up each year.

The mayor, the board of estimates and apportionment set the budget for the police department, and they've cut the budget so far they're looking for someplace to save money and that place is off our backs out of our pockets, Cullen said.

Mayor Slay says rising healthcare costs are a problem throughout the U.S.

"You know, I can tell you that healthcare costs are skyrocketing for individuals all over the country, not just here in St. Louis and that's a challenge that we're continuing to work on," Slay said.

Benefits are an issue across the board for both retired and active duty officers.

Members of the St. Louis Police Officers Association are holding a no-confidence vote in Police Chief Joe Mokwa for salary and staffing levels that haven't been raised in years.


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