Lakeland police seek coronavirus hazard pay, or at least benefits

Lakeland police say they are going far beyond the call of duty because of COVID-19, and they should be compensated extra for it.

The union that represents Lakeland police just sent the city a letter to see if officers could get hazard pay. 

Other law enforcement agencies around the country are paying extra. The union says in Palm Beach, officers are getting a five-percent pay hike for the duration of the pandemic. 

In Cincinnati, they’re supposedly getting $1,200 more a month.

“We were always were able, in my opinion, to know where your threat was -- the bad guy was over here, the threat was over here, the gunshots are coming from over here. I could deal with that. This is the unknown threat,” explained Nick Maroulda of the West Central Florida Police Benevolent Association.

Lakeland’s mayor seems lukewarm on the idea, but the union says it’s not giving up. It plans to pitch perks that don’t involve cash, like more vacation time, or take-home cars.

If you feel sick:

The Florida Department of Health has opened a COVID-19 Call Center at 1-866-779-6121. Agents will answer questions around the clock. Questions may also be emailed to Email responses will be sent during call center hours.

LINK: Florida's COVID-19 website

CORONAVIRUS IN FLORIDA: What you need to know


Map of known COVID-19 cases:

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