As you continue to serve during this unprecedented health crisis, I know there is a lot of uncertainty and that many of you have major concerns. I want you all to know that DSABC Leadership is listening, we hear you, and we are doing everything we can to ensure the Sheriff and his Administration understands and takes action to address your questions, concerns, and recommendations.
- We know that first and foremost you are concerned about your safety and that of your family. This is also our highest priority and testing for COVID is a big part of this. We want all deputies to be treated equally when it comes to testing.
- Second, the safety of the jail is critical. This means that it must be effectively disinfected and as quickly as possible. There are professional cleaning proposals sitting on the desk of command staff and these must be acted upon.
- Third, we know that many of you are concerned about the fact that deputies are being sent home to quarantine. This brings a dangerous and unnecessary health risk to your families. Right now, there are hotel rooms available to first responders who want to quarantine away from home. We have encouraged the Administration to make this an option for you.
- Fourth, we have heard your objections to the fact that you will lose vacation and holiday time because time off has been frozen and is not being excepted. We have asked the Sheriff to have all time rolled over until October 2021 to give deputies ample time to request for time off.
- Fifth, DSABC Leadership is asking the Sheriff to compensate you with hazard pay during the crisis, just as many other counties, nationwide, are already doing. The reason many consider you “heroes” is because you’re doing an already dangerous job that is now even more dangerous. I have communicated all of these concerns and recommendations directly to the Sheriff, and like you, I eagerly await his response.
One last note: When it comes to rights and benefits, deputies should never be pitted against each other by the Administration’s actions or inactions. I’ve made this clear to the Sheriff and we should all remember that ourselves. Always remember that we’re in this together. We all wear the same uniform and we should speak in one voice, just as our motto states: “One Badge. One Voice.”
Stay safe and remember we always have your six!
Contact Jeremy Payne by phone at (210) 875-8142 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.