Create an Account - Increase your productivity, customize your experience, and engage in information you care about.
Andrew Tancabel and Kyle Schill were among the first Minot Fire Department firefighters to be vaccinated against the coronavirus during the week of Jan. 4.
Members of the Minot Police Department and the Minot Fire Department have begun receiving vaccinations for COVID-19.
Police Chief John Klug and Fire Chief Kelli Kronschnabel said it’s important for first responders to be vaccinated against the virus because they are in constant contact with members of the public.
“For us, we don’t control the settings we respond to. We don’t know who we’re going to have contact with,” Klug said. “When we’ve gotten vaccinations in the past, it’s been for the same reason: We can’t control the environment we’re in and we have to try to protect ourselves as best we can.”
Klug said six police officers were vaccinated on Jan. 4, and another 10 on Jan. 6.
“We were told that next week would be the final push for emergency service workers, and that Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of next week would be available to accommodate anyone in our department who wants the vaccine,” Klug said.
Receiving the vaccine is voluntary, although Klug and Kronschnabel both recommend their employees get vaccinated.
“We’ve put together some information about the vaccines to provide to our employees. We’re hoping that informing our people better will help them make an informed choice,” Klug said. “It’s important that we protect not only our people, but also those who are in the environment we respond to. Anything we can do to keep everybody safe, we’re going to try to do that.”
Both chiefs said they provided as much information as they could to their employees to help them make a personal decision on getting the vaccine.
“We recommend they do it for safety sake, but if they have concerns we urge them to contact their health care provider for advice,” Klug said. “A lot of people don’t want to be the first one to get it, but when they see others get it and they don’t have any side effects, that helps increase the numbers.”
“For me, this is like our personal protective equipment: It’s another tool to protect our personnel and our community,” she said. “We’ve encouraged our employees to get other vaccinations in the past, and this pandemic has caused us again to pause and realize why we take vaccinations - to protect ourselves and others.”
Seven Fire Department employees were vaccinated in early January, with another group vaccinated this week.
“I think of it like this: In a fire, we are trained to protect ourselves, then the team’s protection comes next, and then we protect everyone else,” Kronschnabel said. “This is the same thing. We have to protect ourselves while we protect everyone else.”
The employees who were vaccinated received the Moderna vaccine, which requires a second dose 28 days after the first dose.