ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Albany Police Department announced that two members of the Communications Division have tested positive for COVID-19 and 10 others are currently experiencing symptoms.
“The health of our employees is of paramount importance to us and we wish our emergency dispatchers a speedy recovery,” said Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan and Police Chief Eric Hawkins.
All emergency 911 calls continue to be answered swiftly, and there have been no interruptions in emergency dispatching services, according to the department. As a precautionary measure, the Albany Police Department has activated its contingency plan to ensure continued emergency dispatching services in coordination with the Colonie Police Department and Albany County Sheriff’s Department.
The Albany Police Department’s Communications Division continues to implement several strict guidelines to help minimize the risks associated with COVID-19, including that all employees must wear a mask. However, similar to many other emergency first responder agencies across the nation, the department says their work puts them at heightened risk of being exposed to COVID-19.
Mayor Sheehan has also signed an Executive Order temporarily suspending applicable Municipal Civil Service Rules to expedite the hiring of experienced Emergency Dispatchers to fill existing vacancies and ensure the continued delivery of this essential service.
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