Gunshot death

Look into how to better help troubled police officers

It is heartbreaking to read of a young police officer's life prematurely ended by a shot believed to have been fired from his service pistol (Police officer believed to have fired 2 shots in the air before shooting himself in Bayfront Ave, Sept 19).

There have been a few other such cases reported since 2015.

Police officers are under high stress as their duties are essential to Singapore. Their duties are so important that during times of crisis, they need the Commissioner of Police's approval to resign.

They have to maintain law and order while risking their own lives. The stressful nature of police duties coupled with personal issues could have led them to their breaking point.

The police say officers are trained to identify signs of distress and learn basic coping skills. They are also told of resources they can access if they need support.

Unfortunately, in the most recent case, the officer had not sought help from his unit, supervisors or counsellors, a police statement said.

The police should look into possible causes of stress that officers may be facing and take more measures to let officers be more willing to share their problems with someone and seek help.

Benjamin Ng C.K.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 24, 2022, with the headline Look into how to better help troubled police officers. Subscribe