The Chicago police union chief called on officers to ignore the city’s vaccine mandate set to take effect on Friday.
In a video posted to YouTube, Chicago Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara told officers, “Do not fill out the portal information.”
“I’ve made my status very clear as far as the vaccine, but I do not believe the city has the authority to mandate that to anybody — let alone that information about your medical history,” Catanzara said.
The city’s vaccine mandate will place officers who do not submit proof of vaccination by the deadline on a “no pay” status. The police union is preparing a lawsuit against the city of Chicago.
“It’s safe to say that the city of Chicago will have a police force at 50% or less for this weekend coming up,” he added.
Catanzara also instructed officers to file for an exemption from the mandate but not to confirm the vaccination status with the city.
“I can guarantee you that no-pay status will not last more than 30 days,” he continued. “There’s no way they’re going to be able to sustain a police department workforce at 50% capacity or less for more than seven days without something budging.”
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot addressed speculations about police non-compliance with the vaccine mandate during a press conference Wednesday.
“What will the city do if over 50% of cops go into work and get sent home this week?” a reporter asked Lightfoot.
“I don’t expect that to happen,” the mayor responded. “And again, I’m going to be focused on the positive … that all our city employees … do their duty and make sure that they get vaccinated.”
“I’ve been very clear,” Lightfoot added. “The only way that we can maximize safety in our workplace is to get people vaccinated.”
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Original Author: Matthew Miller