“Someone has to do this”: NYPD creates special teams to collect coronavirus victims' bodies



“Someone has to do this”: NYPD creates special teams to collect coronavirus victims' bodies

NYPD considered setting up “DOA groups” to collect the bodies of people who died at home or on the street as a result of complications of coronavirus infection. It is reported by the New York Post.





In an e-mail sent on Wednesday to the local detective units, the leadership asked the volunteers to form city-wide detachments to collect the dead.

“The idea of creating an urban DOA team is under consideration, and we need only volunteers. No one needs to be forced, the message says. “It takes three teams (2 police officers per team).”


One team will work from 6:00 to 14:30, and the second — from 18:00 to 02:30. The third group of body collectors will have a more flexible schedule.

For 60 hours of overtime work per month, volunteers are promised to double their salary.

But police reportedly questioned the proposal. The idea of creating a “squad of corps trucks” during the outbreak of COVID-19 did not find universal support among the police, despite the additional payments.

“I would never do it for the money,” one source said. — This is a matter of “life and death” or long-term disability. Doing this for the sake of a few extra cents is not worth it. ”






Another source called the extra overtime earnings “blood money”.

Ed Mullins, president of the Union of Sergeant Charity Associations, said: “police must be well-trained and equipped if they are enlisted in these creepy squads.”

“This is what we did after September 11th,” said Mullins. — Many people are sick now, and many of them have died. This is part of our job, but with the right training, with the right equipment, and with the right protocol! Attracting people with no experience puts their lives at risk. Every police officer is working in dangerous conditions right now. ”


However, a retired policeman said that was not a bad idea.

“People are dying at home,” he said. “In any case, if a 911 call arrives, the patrol must answer.”


On Wednesday, 6,172 police and department employees fell ill — nearly 17% of New York police.

Officials said that 1,418 of them tested positive for COVID-19.


The story of Richard Phipps:

“Someone has to do it” Richard Phipps works as a janitor at a Fort Green hospital, but on Wednesday he got a new job — a Toyota red forklift driver, who moves the bodies of coronavirus victims from Brooklyn Hospital Center to a refrigerator trailer outside.

“I don't want to drive this,” he said in an interview with the New York Post, pointing to a machine for moving and stacking. “But someone has to.”


Phipps said a white tent was set up near the hospital on Tuesday so that people couldn’t see how bodies wrapped in white sheets were loaded onto a trailer with a forklift.






“As it is, it is,” he said. “It could be anyone.” It can be you, it can be me, it can be any of my employees.

I try my best. I do not humiliate anyone. I respect them. This is a man. This is not an animal. This is a person. This is a different life. This is a soul that I don’t know.”


Phipps said that he prayed for the families of the dead and “for their comfort.” He even suggested that his role in the pandemic was predetermined.

“It's out of my control. Everything is in God's hands, ” he said. — Someone has to do it. What can I say? “The Lord called David.”


The hospital’s use of a forklift caused outrage after a video of its use was posted on Facebook on Sunday. The man who posted the video recorded on his cell phone from a car parked across the road also expressed shock and dismay.



On Tuesday, a passerby called the scene of the loading of bodies “really sad and disturbing,” and the director of the funeral home said: “For the sake of people's mental health, these things cannot be done on the street.

“Being at the forefront in conditions of unimaginable stress and in the most difficult circumstances that one can imagine, the entire hospital staff is doing everything possible to take care of our patients and each other with the highest level of compassion and respect,” the hospital said in a statement. “Despite the fact that, unfortunately, some people are not satisfied with the“ service, ” the cruel reality is that a very difficult choice is made every minute of every day.”





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