Gary Sinise Foundation Helps Establish Shelter For LAPD Cops Who Can't Go Home
Los Angeles, CA – The Gary Sinise Foundation has teamed up with the Los Angeles Police Foundation (LAPF), local businesses and generous volunteers to establish a safe haven for Los Angeles police officers who cannot go home between their shifts as they battle coronavirus pandemic.
Some officers are unable to return home because they live with high-risk loved ones, and others have been struggling with the issue of distance between their residences and work due to recently-implemented 12-hour shifts, the Gary Sinise Foundation said in a Facebook post.
The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) set up 80 cots at the Los Angeles Police Academy in Elysian Park to provide officers with a place to rest between their shifts.
The LAPF and Sinise’s foundation then partnered to sponsor shoe shiners and barbers to provide free services to the officers at the shelter for a period of two weeks.
Weary officers also have access to food and can get their uniforms cleaned, KABC reported.
“My heart goes out to all those who have lost loved ones and friends during this terrible crisis,” Sinise said in a Facebook video on Wednesday.
“As the coronavirus continues to grip our nation and global community, we face a public health crisis with many cases of COVID-19 being confirmed daily and no clear timetable of when this disease will be fully contained,” he continued. “The challenges facing our public health workers, our first responders, our military – the challenges that they and their families are facing are very, very demanding.”
Sinise said his foundation launched the “Emergency COVID-19 Combat Service” campaign to help provide protective gear to “ensure that our first responder departments can carry out their duties” while also keeping themselves and their families safe.
The foundation has also donated over 4,000 pieces of sterilizing gear and personal protective equipment to first responders across the nation over the course of the past several weeks, WABC reported.
“Rest assured, the Gary Sinise Foundation is not going to let coronavirus slow us down or keep us from achieving our mission,” Sinise said in the video. “We’re going to get through this together as a nation, and we’re going to be stronger for it.”
He also urged citizens to do their part by complying with stay-at-home orders and social distancing recommendations.
“Most of all… I want to say ‘thank you’ to the amazing men and women who are out there on the front lines – our heroes,” Sinise said. “We look to you to inspire us all through this time of uncertainty and fear. Thank you for serving our country and fighting this fight. I salute you.”
Sinise, a Hollywood actor best known for his role as “Lieutenant Dan” in Forest Gump, has been advocating for “our nation’s defenders” for 40 years, according to the foundation’s website.
In the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, he spearheaded a multitude of projects in support of first responders, military members, and their families, he explained on his website.
“My personal mission is what led to the founding of the Gary Sinise Foundation in 2011,” he said. “We will continue to expand this mission in support of our nation’s defenders, veterans, first responders and their loved ones, while upholding the importance of keeping our country strong by taking care of those who serve.”
Over 91 percent of the funds donated to the Gary Sinise Foundation goes directly to first responders, according to the foundation website.