City's image is least of police, firefighters union members' con - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

City's image is least of police, firefighters union members' concerns

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The nation has looked at the Bluff City this week for reasons other than Beale Street and barbecue.  (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) The nation has looked at the Bluff City this week for reasons other than Beale Street and barbecue. (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
Look up "Memphis" in any search engine, and you'll find "Blue Flu" and "Red Rash" reported by multiple news outlets. (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) Look up "Memphis" in any search engine, and you'll find "Blue Flu" and "Red Rash" reported by multiple news outlets. (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC) - The nation has looked at the Bluff City this week for reasons other than Beale Street and barbecue. Look up "Memphis" in any search engine, and you'll find "Blue Flu" and "Red Rash" reported by multiple news outlets.

Tourists WMC Action News 5 talked to say they've seen plenty of police downtown despite the work stoppage by the sick calls. But short-term visitors are one thing; possible permanent residents are the ones that worry John Carroll, who runs, among other things, Choose 901.

"We're trying to get millennials in particular to move to Memphis and choose Memphis as a place to invest and enjoy their lives," said Carroll.

He believes the publicity surrounding the "Blue Flu," combined with an existing crime perception, is a legitimate concern.

"If I've got a 22-year-old, 23-year-old looking at a job here in Memphis, and their parents are thinking about it, and Google it, and see police officers aren't working ... That might heighten an increase in that," he said.

For Carroll, it means selling the positive points of Memphis, how many areas are improving, and, hopefully, how the "Blue Flu" is finally ending.

Union members say the city's image is the least of their concerns when faced with losing some of their benefits.

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