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NYPD union wants officers out of ‘social distancing enforcement’

PBA president Patrick Lynch slammed city officials for releasing inmates to curb the spread of COVID-19 and discouraging proactive policing


Police officers patrol a quiet street on foot Wednesday night, April 22, 2020, during the coronavirus pandemic, in the Bronx borough of New York.

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

New York Daily News

NEW YORK CITY — The city’s largest police union is demanding cops get “out of the social distancing enforcement business,” while slamming city officials for “releasing criminals,” “discouraging proactive policing,” and leaving subways “in chaos.”

“This situation is untenable: the NYPD needs to get cops out of the social distancing enforcement business altogether,” a statement from Police Benevolent Association president Patrick Lynch said.

“The cowards who run this city have given us nothing but vague guidelines and mixed messages, leaving the cops on the street corners to fend for ourselves,” Lynch said. “Nobody has a right to interfere with a police action. But now that the inevitable backlash has arrived, they are once again throwing us under the bus.”

Lynch added that the politicians are “still watering down our laws, releasing real criminals and discouraging proactive enforcement of fare evasion and quality of life issues.”

“As a result, our subways are in chaos and we have hero nurses getting mugged on their way to our hospitals,” he said, referring to a nurse who had her phone torn out of her hand in Times Square on April 26. “As the weather heats up and the pandemic continues to unravel our social fabric, police officers should be allowed to focus on our core public safety mission. If we don’t, the city will fall apart before our eyes.”