Unvaxxed cops opt to get COVID shot to avoid admin, warehouse jobs
MANILA, Philippines — Police officers who have yet to get themselves vaccinated against COVID-19 are persuaded to receive the shot to avoid reassignment to administrative and warehouse work.
Philippine National Police (PNP) Gen. Dionardo Carlos disclosed this during a press conference on Monday, lauding Administrative Support for COVID-19 Task Force (ASCOTF) commander Lt. Gen. Joselito Vera Cruz for doing a good job in convincing unvaccinated police officers to get jabbed against the coronavirus.
As of December 5, only 0.43 percent of police officers or 965 remain unvaccinated without reason against COVID-19 while 0.38 percent or 865 have raised medical concerns and other conditions like allergic reactions as a basis to stay unvaccinated.
“So from 1,800, 1,700, 1,500 — we hope to bring it to zero. Of course, meron kasing mga medical reasons kasi eh, ‘yong hindi talaga sila (pwede), we don’t want to put them at risk if we require them to have the vaccination, so ‘yon ‘yong mga consideration namin,” Carlos said.
(So from 1,800, 1,700, 1,500 — we hope to bring it to zero. Of course, there are some who cannot really get the vaccines due to medical reasons, some really cannot take it, and we don’t want to put them at risk if we require them to have the vaccination, so that’s a consideration.)
“But ‘yong pu-pwede, kukumbinsihin namin, I don’t think it’s ano eh. Our personnel, no’ng sinabi ko na we will work, hindi sila no-work. So ayaw n’yan lumipat, gusto nila kung saan sila sanay, kasi kapag inilipat ko silang bodegero, nasa loob sila ng storage, admin work,” he added.
(But those who can, we’d convince them. I don’t think it’s hard. Our personnel, I told them that they are not excused from their duties even if unvaccinated. So these officers do not want to leave their posts because what they want is to stay in the area where they are accustomed. Because if I reassign them as warehousemen, they will be confined in the storage and admin work.)
Carlos explained that police officers who remain unvaccinated may no longer be deployed to the field in order to protect themselves and other people from contracting COVID-19.
This means that they would be placed in areas where there are would have fewer interactions with the public — like offices and storage areas.
“They would like to be able to do their part and contribute to our collective efforts, our collective way of doing services. So I think that’s the very reason,” Carlos said.
“Gusto nilang magtrabaho. Two-way: nakumbinsi sila ni Sir Jojo Vera Cruz at gusto nilang magtrabaho, ayaw nila ng admin work,” he added.
(They want to work. It’s two-way: they were convinced by Sir Jojo Vera Cruz, and they also want to work but they do not want admin work.)
Having vaccinated police officers would be a big help to the PNP, especially as it starts deployment plans for the 2022 national and local elections. Earlier, Carlos and PNP acting Director for Intelligence Brig. Gen. Michael John Dubria said that over 500 areas were considered as election hotspots, with at least 39 towns and seven cities under the red category.
For the deployment, Carlos said they would like to deploy as many police officers as possible to ensure that areas declared as poll hotspots would be monitored properly.
“Maximize tayo ng (We must maximize our) personnel. That’s why the early preparation is identifying ‘yong mga (the) deployment ng ating (of our) police, if they don’t need to be in that particular deployment, we will recall them and put them with priority on the deployment for the upcoming elections,” Carlos said.
“Like for example, here in the headquarters. How many is our RSSF, reserve force? Pwede ba naming i-forward deploy ‘yan (Could we deploy them)? So we will assess it based on the situation. Ako, ang intention ko is to forward-deploy (My intention is to deploy) all our available personnel, and just maintain a small number of quick reaction force para makita namin na (so we could see) let’s say, ARMM. How concerned are we going to be, come May 9,” he added.
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