As New York City becomes a major epicenter for the CoViD-19 outbreak in the United States, thousands of the city’s police officers are out sick from work.
At a press conference on Wednesday, NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said that at least 236 members of the NYPD have tested positive for coronavirus and 3,200 additional officers have called out sick.
“We are backfilling patrols where we need to. We are taking on a variety of assignments,” Shae said, according to ABC News.
There are also 84 members of the New York City Fire Department who have tested positive for the virus.
People who are working in many industries in the United States currently do not have access to proper protective equipment even though they are still dealing with the public during this pandemic.
In many cases, this causes workers in these positions to become sick themselves and pass the illness on to the many people they come into contact with. This is especially true for healthcare workers and police.
Last week, Richard Prado tweeted a video showing multiple police and rescue workers in New York City dealing with a man who had suddenly collapsed on the subway after he “gasped for air loudly.”
It is not clear what the man’s current condition is, if he was infected with the coronavirus and if he was suffering from CoViD-19, but the crew that was working with him did not appear to be wearing protective gear.
Meanwhile, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that 300 non-violent, elderly inmates will be released from Riker’s Island Prison to help prevent the spread of a growing outbreak at the facility.
“We want to identify anyone in those categories and get them released immediately,” the mayor said, according to the Hill.
Only inmates who meet certain conditions will be released. These conditions include having serious pre-existing health conditions and less than one year remaining on their sentences. Inmates who were charged with sexual assault or domestic violence will not be eligible for release.