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Are police agencies, including Las Vegas, being transparent with COVID-19 cases?

Police
Posted at 4:29 PM, Aug 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-24 21:48:51-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — They are often only a few feet, sometimes only a few inches away from people. Police officers who put themselves in harm’s way every day are dying from COVID-19.

Hundreds of officers around the country have died from coronavirus complications since the pandemic began. That’s sparked questions on whether police departments are being transparent when it comes to releasing the number of COVID-19 cases hitting their agencies and how many officers are vaccinated.

Police have been up close and personal with the community during the pandemic, bringing risks of exposure for officers.

The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) says more than 550 officers nationwide have died from COVID-19 since last year.

RELATED STORY: COVID-19 taking a toll on law enforcement in Las Vegas, nationwide

Trying to figure out how many officers have been impacted by COVID-19 locally is not an easy task.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department says their officers have a right to privacy and federal law limits what an employer can reveal about an employee’s medical condition.

The agency went on to say it's up to the family of an officer to decide whether to disclose more information about an officer who has died.

4 LVMPD officer's families have disclosed to the public that their loved one has died from complications from COVID-19.

The City of Henderson says it’s voluntary for city employees to share their vaccination cards and didn’t have a figure on how many Henderson Police Department officers have gotten the shot. The city did say none of their officers have died from COVID-19.

RELATED STORY: Las Vegas police department to require COVID-19 vaccines for new hires

North Las Vegas Police Department says it does not keep track of employee vaccination records either. The agency credits proactive procedures throughout the pandemic for having no employees dying from COVID-19.

The FOP represents more than 300,000 officers around the country and Is recommending officers get the vaccine saying the science is compelling, but it remains a personal choice.

The Las Vegas Police Protective Association also says it is up to an individual officer to make an informed decision whether they want to be vaccinated or not.