HUDSON, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Hudson Police Department has donated 84 bulletproof vests and 13 Kevlar SWAT helmets to Ukraine amid the ongoing Russian invasion. The equipment was given to St. Michael’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church for immediate shipment to Ukraine.
The police vests are certified for five years, which coincides with a federal grant that requires the vests to be periodically replaced. Police said the old vests were taking up space in their inventory.
“We have been trying to determine the best way to dispose of these vests and helmets,” said Lt. Andy Moon, Hudson Police Department Sr. Firearms Instructor. “You just can’t throw these things in a landfill, and there is a substantial cost to our city associated with having them burned or shredded by an authorized company.”
Some of the equipment was tested at the firearms range. While the vests and helmets have been taken out of service, police said the equipment is still very effective at stopping small caliber bullets and shrapnel.
Chief L. Edward Moore contacted Father Wolodymyr Paszko, a priest at St. Michael’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church, about the equipment. Father Paszko has been arranging weekly shipments of medical supplies and food to Ukraine.
“Father Paszko is a lifelong friend,” said Moore. “A couple years ago we partnered together and shipped Hudson’s abandoned bicycles to an orphanage in Ukraine. With the vest rotation and the suspension of our SWAT team, this was the most logical and best use for our old vests and helmets. I am sure all of our citizens agree. Our used equipment, which probably would have been scrapped, could actually save the life of an innocent civilian or child.”