A significant exodus of police officers is occurring in New York City, with over 2,500 departing from the NYPD this year alone. This figure, standing at 2,516, represents the fourth highest annual departure rate in the past decade, as per data from the NYPD pension records reported by the New York Post.
This departure rate marks a 43% increase compared to the 1,750 officers who left in 2018.
Additionally, an increasing number of officers are choosing to leave before becoming eligible for their full pensions. In 2020, around 509 officers left before reaching the required 20 years of service for full pension benefits. However, this year has seen a dramatic rise, with 1,040 officers under the 20-year threshold quitting already, indicating a 104% increase, and the year hasn’t even concluded yet.
“The workload is a leading factor driving people away from the job,” said Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Hendry. “If the NYPD is going to survive these staffing reductions, it cannot just keep squeezing cops for more hours.”
In February, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) witnessed the transfer of 21 officers from the NYPD within just two days, as reported by the Post.
June witnessed the resignation of Keechant Sewell, the former NYPD Commissioner, amid reported tensions with the mayor’s office.
This significant departure of officers coincides with substantial budget reductions facing the NYPD, which are attributed to the financial strain caused by the city’s crisis with illegal migrants.
Mayor Eric Adams declared these budget cuts earlier in the month. By September 2025, the NYPD’s force will be reduced to approximately 29,000 officers, the smallest number in over twenty years. Furthermore, the upcoming five classes for the Police Academy have been scrapped as a part of these budgetary measures.
This year, the NYPD adjusted its physical fitness criteria to increase the recruitment of women, a move that reportedly required the mayor’s approval.
However, last month Mayor Adams acknowledged the need for more officers in the city. Speaking on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Adams emphasized, “We can use more. I’m very clear on that.”
He also noted that this issue is not unique to New York City, pointing out a nationwide law enforcement crisis. Cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Austin, and Nashville have also been grappling with a shortage of police officers.