Area police, sheriff’s officers follow guidelines for face masks

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Locally, mask rules at the Rome Police Department and Oneida County Sheriff’s Office are strictly enforced.

While the Rome Police do not have a specific mask policy in place, spokesperson Lt. Sharon Rood said the department is following all mask and social distancing guidelines from the federal Centers for Disease Control.

“We’re following the CDC guidelines,” Rood stated. “If they cannot socially distance, they have to wear a mask.”

Rood said the justice building on North James Street is well-stocked with hand sanitizer and disinfectant, as well as paper masks for the officers.

She said the department provided some reusable cloth masks to their officers at the start of the pandemic, and have since allowed officers to buy and wear their own masks if they so choose.

Primarily, Rome Police are doing more with social distancing, Rood said.

“We’re really minimizing how often the officers are inside the station,” she explained. Officers are encouraged to conduct as much of their work as possible in their patrol vehicles, including paperwork and taking complaints.

The Rome Police department’s roll call routines at the start of each shift are now also conducted in the station’s sally port near the vehicles.

At the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office in Whitestown, Chief Deputy Jonathan Owens said the agency requires masks on all deputies, corrections officers and administration personnel inside the Law Enforcement Building and out.

“They are required to wear their masks inside and outside of the building,” Owens explained. “Unless they’re inside their own office.”

Owens said anyone moving around the building is required to wear a mask. He added that every employee’s temperature is taken at least once a day.

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