Police unions balk at vaccine mandates
Some municipal governments are imposing coronavirus vaccine mandates on their employees, including local police. This hasn’t gone over well with the heads of local police unions, who are…a trifle upset:
Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot has mandated vaccination for all city employees, and Fraternal Order of Police president John Catanzara is not taking it well. “This has literally lit a bomb underneath the membership,” he told the Chicago Sun-Times. “We’re in America, goddamn it. We don’t want to be forced to do anything. Period. This ain’t Nazi fucking Germany.”
No, it isn’t, but it sure does look like a union thing:
Police unions are denouncing vaccine mandates in New York, San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, Tucson, and Richmond, among others. “We are a union and we will defend our members,” national FOP executive director Jim Pasco told Axios. “You cannot tell people what to do. It’s still an individual and personal choice.” In cities that have made their mandates stick, police have warned of mass exodus.
But there’s a big silver lining to those municipal cops who decide they would rather quit than get a jab:
The number of police who actually walk away over a vaccine mandate is likely to be far less than the threatened numbers. But however many police decide to self-purge over vaccine mandates is one less risking becoming that city’s next Derek Chauvin. Police threats shouldn’t make mayors scared to enforce a vaccine mandate. It should be seen instead as a side benefit.
Not caving to unions – police or otherwise – would be an important step in a larger effort to spur local government reform.