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COVID-19 In Pennsylvania: Groups Representing State Troopers, Corrections Officers Renew Calls For Vaccine Prioritization

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

HARRISBURG (KDKA) - After Gov. Tom Wolf moved teachers to the front of the COVID-19 vaccine line, groups representing state troopers and corrections officers both renewed their calls for prioritization.

The Pennsylvania State Troopers Association president issued a statement about the Wolf administration's "refusal" to prioritize vaccination of troopers, saying 700 out of the state's 4,300 troopers have been infected so far.

"An outbreak could cripple our department. Public safety should be a priority right now. The PSTA renews our call for the administration to vaccinate first responders so they can focus on doing their jobs," President David Kennedy said.

Meanwhile, the Pennsylvania State Corrections Officers Association says nearly 1,800 officers have been infected and two have died. They say prisons are super spreaders and point to an outbreak at SCI Camp Hill that infected nearly 400 people in three days.

President John Eckenrode said some officers have gotten the vaccine, "but there isn't a consistent, systemwide effort."

Right now, correctional officers and first responders are in Phase 1B. Pennsylvania is currently in Phase 1A, which includes more than 4 million people. So far, the state has administered 2.5 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in total.

The Wolf administration says vaccine supply still can't meet demand.

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