Arizona’s Sheriff Joe Arpaio Instructs Deputies to Protect Themselves From Illegal Immigrant-Borne Swine Flu
It was the perfect opportunity for Maricopa County, Ariz. Sheriff Joe Arpaio. After all, it’s been more than a month since he was in the national spotlight when the federal government announced that it was investigating his office in Maricopa County for racial profiling and other civil rights abuses stemming from his eagerness to crack down on illegal immigrants.
So what better gift than swine flu?
According to The Arizona Republic, Arpaio — who’s also starring in a new Fox reality show — is now instructing his deputies working on the streets and in the jails where they might encounter illegal immigrants to wear protective gear if they fear they’ve come in contact with someone infected with the deadly swine flu.
According to The Republic:
The sheriff’s office will make masks, gloves and other measures available to 750 deputies working the streets and will add extra deputies trained to identify suspected illegal immigrants based on the theory that some of those inmates might have come from areas in Mexico where the infection was rampant, said Lt. Brian Lee, a sheriff’s spokesman.
“Sheriff Joe,” as he’s known, also made a point of warning that infectious diseases could proliferate throughout the United States if the country doesn’t quickly reinforce its border with Mexico.
The new protective gear is specifically designed “for the arrest of illegal immigrants,” but also “to keep deputies from exposing themselves to infected people before they learn of the suspect’s legal status in the country, Lee said deputies would be encouraged to protect themselves if they come into contact with anyone exhibiting signs of the flu- no matter where the suspect appears to have come from.”