Although law enforcement officers across the country were given priority to get vaccinated against the deadly COVID-19 virus, many have opted out not only jeopardizing themselves but also the safety of those ‘they’re responsible for guarding, monitoring and patrolling, experts say.’
“I think it’s unacceptable,” Joe Lombardo, the head of Las Vegas police and sheriff of Clark County, said of the meager demand for the shots within his force.
- Las Vegas: Only 39 percent of employees have gotten at least one dose.
- Atlanta: 36 percent of sworn officers have been vaccinated.
- Of course, OHIO!: Columbus Division of Police — Ohio’s largest police department, only 28 percent have received their first jab.
According to The Post:
The numbers paint a troubling picture of policing and public health. Because officershave high rates of diabetes, heart disease and other conditions, their hesitancyputs them at greater risk of serious illness from the coronavirus while also undermining force readiness, experts said. Police officers were more likely to die of covid-19 last year than of all other causes combined, according to data compiled by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.
Police hesitancy also means officers may be vectors of spread to vulnerable people with whom they interact during traffic stops, calls for service and other high-contact encounters. That could thwart efforts to restore community trust in a moment of heightened scrutiny after last month’s conviction of ex-officer Derek Chauvin in the killing of George Floyd.