Police services are spread too thin

Staff shortages at police stations throughout Attica were cited by the Southeastern Attica Police Department during a recent presentation of action planned for the current year. After the retirement of about 2,000 officers at the end of last year, the situation has worsened. The Athens Police headquarters (GADA) staff plan is for 21,000 positions, but the actual force is much smaller. Until the December retirements, it was estimated at about 16,500. At any time, about 17 percent of the force is on sick leave. Another problem is that there are a large number of officers on what is known as «luxury» duty. About 2,700 officers work as personal security guards. Another 4,500 guard homes, embassies and other buildings regarded as potential targets. About 2,300 work for the VIP department. Over 350 offices are on duty in Parliament and 200 have been transferred to the Greek Information Service.