On Monday, April 6, 2020, Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel ordered his community service officers to adjust their schedules and start enforcing social distancing in our community with an emphasis on parks, playgrounds, and athletic fields.
Both Community Service Officers’ hours were moved to 11:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. These are part-time jobs and CSO’s switch days so there is coverage throughout the week.
The initiative will work like this: community service officers will patrol parks, playgrounds, and athletic fields during their shifts every 30 minutes. They will be encouraging anyone in violation of the Governor’s Executive Order for social distancing, to adhere to the executive order and not congregate if it is a violation of the Governor’s directive. This is not an enforcement mechanism, meaning criminal. The goal is to have compliance and the CSO’s have been instructed on the proper techniques for compliance.
The hours of 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. were selected due to several circumstances, including the fact that the schools are off, eLearning is in early morning or thereabout, and afternoon/early evening would be the height of outdoor activity in the village.
Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel stated, “We want our residents to know that this is a community service initiative and not a criminal enforcement matter. This way we can help our residents make sure they are social distancing and we do our part to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus. My hope is that by the end of April we will no longer need these special assignments and will be on the downturn of the pandemic. However, we are fully prepared to continue special assignments, if the Governor keeps his order in place to stay at home.”