COVID-19 And Public Safety

Chicago Police Union President ‘Not Happy’ With COVID-19 Protection For Officers

CHICAGO — As cases of COVID-19 rise, so does the need for proper safety — and there’s not enough for hospitals and first responders.

Some of those workers have tested positive for COVID-19 and some feel they have contracted it while on-the job. 

At least four Chicago police officers have contracted the virus, and Fraternal Order of Police President Kevin Graham believes those officers acquired COVID-19 while on-duty.


Virginia Beach Police Union President Wants Officers On The Front Lines Protected During Pandemic

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – Policing in a coronavirus world is tough and can be dangerous.

News 3 met up with the Virginia Beach Police Benevolent Association President Brian Luciano to talk to him about what it is like for police as the pandemic continues.

“It’s been eerie to see the streets empty and businesses closed early,” said Luciano.

While working the evening shift, he said it is very noticeable and shocking, especially in the Hilltop and Town Center areas of the city.

He said police continue to get calls for service and they keep coming in like normal in this coronavirus world.


Calls To Police Start To Fall With Public Gatherings Restricted And Businesses Shuttered

It’s too early to tell if the shutdown of many public establishments and the end of large gatherings will lower Maine’s crime rate in the long run. But in the short term, criminal activity appears to be down in some parts of the state less than a week after Gov. Janet Mills put in place restrictions on public gatherings and restaurant and bar operations to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Maine has one of lowest crime rates in the nation, but police in much of the state say they’re starting to see a drop in calls for service with fewer people out and about.

Calls to the Maine State Police’s three communication centers have slowed, according to Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.


RI National Guard Trying To Avoid Tapping Into Police, Fire And Prison

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The state is trying to avoid depleting the ranks of police and fire departments – and the prison – after the governor activated the R.I. National Guard last week.

Gov. Gina Raimondo said on Monday she has heard from city and town leaders concerned that activating the guard could make it hard for public safety officials to properly staff their police and fire departments, where personnel often serve in the armed services.

While the governor said at news conference that first responders “will not be called up,” the reality is that the guard is assessing each person on a case-by-case basis.


More Police Are Getting Coronavirus, That Could Be Bad News For Public Safety In The US

After a reserve police officer in San Jose, California, tested positive for coronavirus last week, 20 of his colleagues were quarantined. Another 10 full-time employees from the police department’s family violence unit were also asked to stay home.

“You can imagine. Just this one incident could create an issue with regards to investigations of those real high-profile domestic violence, child abuse cases,” said Sgt. Paul Kelly, president of the San Jose Police Officers Association.

Then there’s the worst-case scenario, Kelly said, where the coronavirus pandemic depletes the police force of one of the largest cities in California. Police officials in San Jose and elsewhere warn that detectives, administrative and special operations staff may have to put on uniforms and respond to 911 calls, taking time away from major investigations.


First Responders Face Danger, Deception On Possible COVID-19 Calls

New Hampshire first responders are running into people lying about their flu-like symptoms for fear they won’t receive treatment, though police and fire departments have adopted new protocols to reduce their exposure to COVID-19.

Emergency personnel want the public to know that despite what they might have heard, EMTs, paramedics and firefighters will treat them and police officers will protect them even if they are symptomatic. Hospitals will receive them, too.

Fire departments in Salem and Londonderry are seeing cases of residents lying during the screening process that helps first responders determine what kind of protective gear they need to wear while responding.


New Orleans First Responders Struggle As Personnel Exposed To COVID-19, Some Test Positive

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) – First responders in New Orleans are starting to feel the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Five New Orleans Police Department officers have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the police department.

The NOPD said Tuesday it has placed an additional 51 employees in self-quarantine out of an abundance of caution.

That number includes personnel who have either come into direct contact with someone who is infected, or someone showing flu-like symptoms.

Three employees have returned to work.

The New Orleans Fire Department said Monday that 54 firefighters have had contact with coronavirus.

The NOFD union leader Aaron Michler was one of those to tested positive for COVID-19.


Michigan Police Captain Dies From COVID-19 Complications

The captain was in his 50s, Chief James Craig said Tuesday. He was not believed to have had any underlying health issues.

A 38-year-old civilian call taker in the police department’s 911 center died Monday.

The police department said Wednesday that nine officers have been confirmed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. As of Monday, more than 280 Detroit officers were off work awaiting test results or self-quarantining, although roughly 150 were expected to return by the end of the week.


New York Corrections Officers Not Allowed To Wear Masks

NEW YORK STATE (via WETM) — Correctional officers in New York will not be allowed to wear or bring in their own masks to work, according to the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision.

“Correction officers can and do wear a mask when appropriate to the medical situation. There is a Department Directive that outlines what can be worn with the uniform.  The masks are not allowed unless medically necessary for the job and area they work in and then will be provided to them.”

The New York State Department of Health and CDC do not recommend that the general public use face masks to protect themselves during the COVID-19 pandemic. Rather, people are encouraged to wash their hands regularly and use hand sanitizer if water and soap are not available.


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