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Cincinnati Declares a State of Emergency

The order is to help alleviate fire department staffing shortages

Today, Cincinnati declared a state of emergency to help the city deal with labor shortages within the city's fire department amid a spike in coronavirus cases and scheduled holiday vacations.

Mayor John Cranley said the surge in cases during the holiday season has led to staffing challenges for the department, which he called a "public danger" that would undermine the city's ability to respond to fire emergencies. In recent weeks, businesses have expressed concern over labor shortages as the highly contagious Omicron variant continues to tear across the nation, shattering case records and sidelining infected workers.

The 60-day emergency declaration will allow the fire department to "ensure full quality fire service in the coming weeks," Cranley said in a statement. The move came after the mayor spoke with Michael Washington, the fire department chief, who requested the declaration. There are 27 firefighters out with COVID-19 and an additional 20 who are out sick, Yasmin Chilton, the mayor's communications director, said in a statement. There are 774 firefighters total on staff.

Please select this link to read the complete article from The New York Times.

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