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Working the holidays to keep the community safe

Many people are fortunate enough to have the holidays off work. However, that's not the case for some.

Posted: Dec. 25, 2017 7:00 PM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - Many people are fortunate enough to have the holidays off work. However, that's not the case for some.

"Working Christmas and the holidays is part of being a police officer," said Lt. Scott Galloway with the Lafayette Police Department.

"Ideally, it be nice to be with our families, but somebody has to work the holidays," said Dr. Rickin Shah at IU Health Arnett Hospital.

For some professionals, working the holidays is part of the job description. That includes doctors and nurses in the emergency room at IU Health Arnett Hospital.

"Our nurses are really responsive. When there's shifts to pick up, our nurses are great about picking them up -- same with the docs, the PAs, the nurse practitioners. We are all just committed to being here, committed to being here for the community," said Dr. Shah.

Dr. Shah said emergencies don't stop during the holidays. Often times, he said it seems busier.

"The holidays now are kind of mixed in with flu season. We're seeing a lot of upper respiratory stuff and asthma exacerbations and phenomena. They really add to the holiday season," said Shah.

The emergency room also sees holiday-related injuries.

"Burn injuries are always something we expect to see. People falling off roofs and setting up Christmas trees and lights on houses," said Shah.

The Lafayette Police Department always seems to keep busy as well.

"A lot of what we deal with in the holiday season would be more of domestic-type issues or any type of alcohol-related crimes are typically what we see," said Lt. Galloway.

Lt. Galloway said the department will be at full staff for Christmas.

"We never diminish our staffing needs, so we're able to handle any calls that happen," said Galloway.

Even though they have to work, they still find time to enjoy the holiday.

"The community will sometimes bring in food or drinks or coffee, things like that, which is nice to have during the night because a lot of places are closed where officers can't get something to eat or drink," said Galloway.

"We do a lot of carry-ins and I think that makes the holidays better -- a lot of cookies, a lot of good food. It's kind of the reward for being here," said Shah.

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