IPSWICH — Police Chief Paul A. Nikas would like to provide residents with an update on the ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) situation.
After a first degree exposure to a person with COVID-19, two members of the Ipswich Police Department have tested negative for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. The two employees have no symptoms but are following state regulations and local policies on isolation guidelines for essential first responders. Both employees will complete a 14 day quarantine and will be able to return to work after that time as long as they remain symptom free.
Neither employee’s possible exposure to the novel coronavirus was related to the exposure of staff on the Ipswich Fire Department.
No other staff members at the Ipswich Police Department were exposed to either member who has tested negative for the virus due to the department’s adherence to guidance and prevention tips from national and state public health officials since the early stages of the COVID-19 situation.
The Ipswich Police Department remains fully operational, and officers continue to respond to all calls as always, while following health and safety guidelines such as wearing appropriate personal protective equipment and practicing social distancing when possible.
As always, residents are reminded to call 911 in the event of an emergency.
“We want residents to know that we’re here to keep our community safe, and are responding to all calls as we normally would, with a few new guidelines in place to prevent the spread of this virus as we do so,” Chief Nikas said. “Ipswich Police will always be there for any member of our community who needs help. Be well, stay healthy, and, in an emergency, always call 911.”
The Ipswich Police Department also wishes to share additional updates regarding the COVID-19 situation:
- Ipswich Police are available to perform wellbeing checks on residents living alone if needed, at the request of family members who may be out of state or in a similar situation and are unable to make contact with their loved one by phone, email or other medium. To request a wellbeing check on a loved one, call the department’s business line at 978-356-4343.
- Ipswich Police have noticed an increase in email and phone scams recently, using the virus as a tactic, and wish to provide the following tips to residents to prevent such scams from taking place in the community:
- Residents are reminded never to give out their personal information over the phone or online.
- Residents are advised that items being marketed as “kits,” “cures” and/or “antidotes” for the novel coronavirus are all scams and may also be dangerous.
- Residents should not partake in any COVID-19 testing from door-to-door solicitors, people who approach them at grocery stores or other community venues, solicitors who call requesting financial information in return for a test or COVID-19 test offerings by mail.
- Residents should NEVER give personal information, medicare numbers, money or home access to people soliciting tests. If a testing kit is mailed to you, you should not accept the test. Return the test to the sender and alert local authorities immediately.
- The Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office has also issued additional tips to prevent the public from falling victim to a COVID-19 related scam. To view their tips, click here.
- Residents with any questions or who believe they may have fallen victim to a scam can contact the Ipswich Police Department by its business line, listed above.
- The Ipswich Police Department is in need of alcohol wipes to continue to disinfect cruisers and equipment between two and three times per eight hour shift. Residents who would like to donate can do so by calling the department’s business line, listed above. The Ipswich Police Department is not seeking donations of any other type of personal protective equipment at this time.
National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week
Additionally, the Ipswich Police Department is currently celebrating National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, which began on Sunday, April 12 and continues through Saturday, April 18.
The second week of April recognizes dispatchers and telecommunications personnel annually in the public safety community. The week-long event, which first began in 1981 by the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office in California, has evolved into a nationwide celebration to recognize and thank those who dedicate their lives to serving the public as telecommunicators.
“Our dispatchers and telecommunications staff work incredibly hard each day to connect our officers with members of the community at critical moments, when they need help,” Chief Nikas said. “I’d like to thank them for the service they provide our Town every day, and recognize the key role their work plays in making sure our department is able to fulfill its mission daily to serve our community and keep people safe.”
For more information on National Public Safety Telecommunicators week, click here.