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Gov. Ron DeSantis may act soon to get COVID-19 shots into the arms of law enforcement officers, sources told NBC 6.
Coral Gables Police Chief Ed Hudak said the actions of his officers are the perfect example as to why they need to be vaccinated soon.
“We may be riding around with masks on, but we may be rendering aid right away,” Hudak said.
Two Coral Gables officers responded to a call of a woman drowning and went into action trying to revive her. The officers are now off the streets because the woman ended up testing positive for COVID-19, Hudak said.
On Friday, Miami-Dade announced that the federal government will be providing 2,000 vaccines a day at Miami-Dade College North and another 1,000 with a mobile van. Sources told NBC 6 DeSantis may be issuing an executive order allowing some of the additional shots to go to police.
“I think the governor should — he’s also a supporter of law enforcement,” said Miami-Dade Commission Chairman Jose “Pepe” Diaz. “And I think that he will make sure that will happen sooner than later. We gotta protect our people.”
As of Monday, of the 565 Miami-Dade officers that have tested positive for COVID-19, 37 of them still are not back at work.
“We need to get the officers vaccinated,” said Steadman Stahl president of the South Florida Police Benevolent Association. “We lost two corrections officers due to it. It’s the No. 1 killer across the country that’s taking lives of law enforcement officers and we need those vaccines.”
The governor’s office did tell NBC 6 it’s doing all it can to get people vaccinated quickly. When it comes to those 3,000 additional shots from the federal government, if they are delivered directly to the county, they may not need the governor’s approval to give them to law enforcement officers.