The NYPD is trying to reassure its rank-and-file during the coronavirus pandemic that has gripped the Big Apple — but cops feel like the top brass couldn’t care less about their well-being.
“We must be expendable,” one police source griped, calling the lack of direction “bulls–t.”
Police officers across the city have been on edge for days, unsure about the spread of the virus in the department, unclear over what shift changes were coming down the pike and unable to get any answers.
“It goes to show from the top-down no one gives a s–t,” another source said. “It’s clear how they feel.”
From the shortage of supplies to expired hand sanitizer to being left in the dark, more than a dozen police sources who spoke to The Post over the past week say officers are furious with how leadership has bungled the handling of the outbreak.
“We all come in the next day and they tell us at roll call. [They] should have closed the building for decontamination but nope, business as usual,” the source said. “The cars, they sprayed with Lysol and put back in service for us. Job doesn’t give a s–t about us.”
Two sources complained that the masks being handed out were cheap and told The Post they were instructed to ask EMTs if they had any extra gloves while on patrol.
“Are you shocked the bosses are making the cops work under unsafe conditions?” another source said. “That’s what they did on 9/11 on the pile and the landfill. I mean how many bosses got sick from 9/11 cancer? There’s not that many.”
Even in police headquarters, there’s been no word about steps taken to limit the spread despite two members of the executive staff — Deputy Commissioner for Employee Relations Robert Ganley and Transit Bureau Chief Edward Delatorre, who are often in and out of meetings at One Police Plaza — testing positive for the bug.
The department has refused to answer questions about what steps it was taking and if any other members of the executive staff had tested positive for the virus or been ordered to self-quarantine for two weeks, citing federal medical privacy rules.
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea, who had crossed paths with Ganley and Delatorre recently, was spotted Wednesday in Albany. The top cop was believed to be at the state capital to discuss bail reform.
“The NYPD is providing continuous updates to our members on how they can protect themselves and prevent the spread of the coronavirus,” a spokeswoman said when asked about protocols at police HQ.
Police sources have also complained that they haven’t spotted any extra cleaning crews in the building after the positive tests.
After news broke Tuesday that a fifth of the force in the 1st Precinct is out sick or out on monitoring after a Lower Manhattan cop tested positive, sources want to know what the department has planned if this happens in another precinct. Some sources believe it’s only a matter of time before it reaches every precinct.
The department has tried to put cops at ease — with a memo from Shea and video from Chief of Patrol Fausto Pichardo — but cops say the top brass is just trying to downplay the threat of spread, according to sources.
Sources slammed the video as “stupid” and “pure nonsense” that offered little new information or reassurance for cops.
“Like how does it work [if you get it]? If you get exposed, is it line of duty where they cover all the expenses? Or is it regular sick time?” a source bristled. “We are police officers, we take an oath, but we are still people, we need to make sure we have the human element. That’s what they need to preach.”
The source conceded, though, the department was up against an unprecedented situation where the whole world is competing for the same supplies — and something you can’t train for.
Additional reporting by Bernadette Hogan
Source: Read Full Article