Plea for Covid vaccines for frontline cops in South Yorkshire

Another plea has been made for Covid vaccines to be administered to frontline police officers in South Yorkshire.

Monday, 18th January 2021, 11:11 am

The South Yorkshire branch of the Police Federation, which represents rank and file officers, said they are being pulled ‘from pillar to post’ as they fight crime and try to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

The Federation claims police services across the country do not have the resources needed to police the pandemic in the way the Government has promised officers can.

He said the job is also being made tougher because of an increase in assaults on officers.

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Steve Kent, chairman of the Police Federation in South Yorkshire

Chairman Steve Kent said: “Last year we saw a 55 per cent increase in officer assaults in South Yorkshire and every day I hear about cops being spat at.

“The police are at the frontline of this (the pandemic), and we seem to be almost the punch bag of society’s frustrations.

“I’m not saying everybody in society does that sort of thing. Of course they don’t. But what I’m concerned about is the realism here. We do not have anywhere near the resources, and I’m not just talking about South Yorkshire but in general, to police the virus the way that people or the Government are trying to make out that we can.”

He added: “Criminals don’t give two tosses about whether there’s a lockdown on, and unfortunately one of our biggest areas, domestic violence, actually grows during lockdown periods.

“Our cops are pulled from pillar to post.

“This is something the public doesn’t realise but need to. We always, and increasingly so, back up our NHS colleagues when it comes to incidents. When there are critical incidents involving health, it’s the police who go because the NHS is stretched – we just don’t have the resources to police this in the way people expect us to.

“The Government comes out and says the police will start enforcing it. The police will do this. The police will be tougher’.

“And yet they’re not even going to vaccinate our officers who are frontline officers, who are going from house to house to house every day and essentially could be super-spreaders by the nature of the job.”