NEW YORK - One officer in the New York City Police Department's 1st Precinct in Manhattan has tested positive for COVID-19, and approximately 17 officers from the precinct have been sent home because of possible exposure, Fox News has learned.
One officer lamented that leadership did not alert everyone in the precinct that one of their colleagues had tested positive, potentially exposing other officers who work at the downtown Manhattan location.
The NYPD, however, says they have informed officers that if someone tests positive, everyone who has been in close contact with that person is notified and if they experience symptoms, they are instructed to call out sick.
A source told Fox News that many of the officers who were sent home regularly work at City Hall, where Mayor Bill de Blasio's office is located and where he and New York's COVID-19 response team have been giving their daily updates on the pandemic response.
Police Commissioner Dermot Shea tweeted that the NYPD has staggered work schedules, increased cleaning of department facilities, provided available personal protective equipment, and officers are being screened and monitored daily by department doctors before returning to work.
The NYPD told Fox News that the department is doing everything it can to protect officers during this time of crisis.
"The police commissioner and leadership have been sharing guidance with the entire NYPD and the department is monitoring the situation extremely closely in real-time," a police official told Fox News. "Our priority is keeping officers and this city safe."