Police: Pandemic has led to more welfare checks

Kalamazoo officers responded to 11% more calls for welfare checks in 2020 than the year before.

Police officers often respond to calls for welfare checks. Basically, somebody is worried about a friend or family member they haven’t been able to get ahold of, so they call police to go and check on them.

That’s not an unusual part of a police officer’s job, but it’s become a lot more common during the pandemic, according to Kalamazoo’s Department of Public Safety (KDPS).

Sign up for our daily newsletter

A weekday morning email roundup of Kalamazoo stories and events.

The department reports that calls for welfare checks increased 11% in 2020 compared to the year before.

“That’s largely attributed to the increased amount of time that people are spending in isolation,” said Public Information Officer Ryan Bridges in an interview with WWMT.

“The inability to gather with family members, in the ways that they have been so accustomed to, and as a result, you know, we saw an increase in people calling on family members, just so that they know that they’re OK,” he said.

You can read more here.

The average story costs NowKalamazoo $400 to produce. Donate to fund stories like this.