NYPD police officers will reportedly face disciplinary action of undisclosed level for flouting face mask orders mandated by the state of New York.
Following complaints of residents who suggested the police are breaking the rules they are trying to enforce, a warning was sent out to all NYPD officers.
As reported by ABC 7, the memo states that all officers “performing duties in public areas, department facilities and whenever social distancing is not possible” are “required to wear face coverings at all times.”
According to the warning, officers who continue to flout the order will face disciplinary action. However, it is not clear what kind of disciplinary action in particular.
In the memo, it was also explained that officers are required to wear proper face masks whereas alternatives such as handkerchiefs, bandanas, and scarves are not allowed.
“It is our responsibility to set the example for our great city. And do everything we can to help ensure we do not have another hospitalized member bring this deadly infection into our homes, or have another funeral,” NYPD Police Chief Terence A. Monahan said as he addressed his officers in a video memo.
The warning follows after months of complaints of locals who claimed that police officers in charge of enforcing coronavirus measures have been ignoring the face mask mandate themselves.
Responding to viral photos of officers flouting face mask rules back in June, the department’s press office suggested that the cops’ energy could be put to better use than wearing face coverings.
“Perhaps it was the heat. Perhaps it was the 15-hour tours, wearing bullet-resistant vests in the sun. Perhaps it was the helmets,” NYPD told the New York Post as they shook off complaints of the public.
“With everything New York City has been through in the past two weeks and everything we are working towards together, we can put our energy to better use.”
Lashing out at the department and its officers was Gov. Andrew Cuomo who last month suggested that law enforcement members who flout rules are encouraging the people to follow their example.
“The current law was everybody has to wear a mask. Why didn’t you enforce the current mask law? Why didn’t you enforce it?” the governor said in a press conference.
“Wearing a mask is the law, but the police officer who’s supposed to enforce the law doesn’t wear a mask.”
Backing up the governor’s comments was also NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio who last week said: “Our officers should be held to the same standard as all citizens, all public standards. If they don’t, there should be penalties.”
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