During the coronavirus pandemic our law enforcement personnel, first responders, and medical professionals don’t have the luxury to work from home or stay indoors to remain safe. In addition to protecting the community, police are now having to enforce new restrictions put in place to help safeguard our community from the continued spread of the virus.
Those of us who aren’t on the front lines may be wondering what we can do to support police and first responders during this challenging time.
One of the simplest things our community can do is to avoid adding to the burden of emergency services while the pandemic is ongoing. Here are a few important suggestions to consider and share:
Know when to call non-emergency lines instead of 911
- Be mindful of not using our first responders’ limited and valuable time and resources on non-emergencies. According to San Francisco’s Department of Emergency Management, you should only call 911 if there is immediate danger to life, a crime in progress, a fire, or a severe medical emergency.
- Less urgent matters—for example, blocked driveways or auto burglaries--can be directed to 311, your city’s service and information line.
- Many cities also have a police non-emergency assistance number, which can be called to report noise complaints, loitering, or request wellness checks. PoliceOne has a directory of non-emergency assistance numbers for the police department in your city.
Comply with shelter in place orders and don’t hoard protective equipment.
- As of March 19, 2020, the entire state of California is under a “shelter in place” order and all residents are being required to stay at home if not completing essential tasks such as food shopping, receiving or giving medical care, or reporting to a job classified as essential.
- Bars, clubs, entertainment venues, some restaurants, and social gatherings are all off limits, according to the public health order. Those who do go outside are asked to stay 6 feet away from others.
- The State of California is also requesting that residents do not hoard masks or gloves—hoarding personal protective equipment (PPEs) keeps them out of the hands of emergency responders who need them.
Following these guidelines can help avoid unnecessary strain on California’s police and emergency professionals. For more information on the shelter in place order, visit covid19.ca.gov.
Avoid visiting our branches or other public places if you are feeling ill, have potentially been exposed to the virus, or can accomplish a transaction online.
Our law enforcement members need to be healthy in order to work. By visiting our branches when you are symptomatic, you could expose other members to illness. Even if you’re feeling healthy, you can still spread COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Fortunately, many of our services and transactions can be done online or outside of a branch, reducing the risk of spreading the virus:
- Take advantage of our Online Services, including our Mobile Banking app, which allows you to deposit checks, transfer funds, and pay bills from your phone any time.
- We are also available by phone. Our Contact Center is available at 800.222.1391 from 7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. on Saturdays.
- If you need to take out cash, we encourage you to use an ATM. Click here to locate a branch or ATM near you.
As an essential service, The Police Credit Union is open for business and here to serve you. In order to follow social distancing requirements, we have temporarily reduced branch hours as of March 19, 2020 and are only conducting essential transactions in our branches. Our hours are subject to change; please visit our COVID19 landing page for the most up-to-date information on branch hours and services deemed essential.
Emergency professionals and first responders are working hard in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Their supporters can help by doing their part to reduce the spread of illness and following current public health orders. Stay safe and be healthy!