The Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA), which represents approximately 30,000 federal law enforcement officers and agents across the United States, came out against the Biden administration’s plan to mandate coronavirus vaccinations.
“The Biden-Harris Administration’s action to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for all federal employees is misguided. Today, 75 percent of American adults have at least their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. We are well on our way to herd immunity based on voluntary vaccination. A mandate at this time only undermines these voluntary vaccination efforts and reduces public comfort in getting vaccinated,” Larry Cosme, president of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, said in a statement.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is a rapidly evolving and emotional trying situation. In the face of so many uncertainties, our federal government should trust its employees to make their own medical decision under consultation with their doctor, not mandate by their employer,” Cosme continued. “Vaccination should be promoted through education and encouragement – not coercion.”
“This executive order villainizes employees for reasonable concerns and hesitancies and inserts the federal government into individual medical decisions. People should not be made to feel uncomfortable for making a reasonable medical choice,” he added. “As FLEOA has consistently said, we encourage our members to seek individual medical guidance and, in most cases, get vaccinated. However, we understand that threatening people’s livelihood and penalizing employees for making independent medical decisions is not the answer. We will continue to review the legal landscape for this order and act as appropriate to support our members and voice their concerns. We are nation built on freedom. We are law enforcement officers who defend that freedom. And we deserve the freedom to make our own health decisions.”
Cosme’s statement comes after CNN reported that President Joe Biden will announce a directive requiring all federal employees receive the vaccination against COVID-19, with no option of being periodically tested to opt out. Additionally, Biden will mandate that 300,000 educators in federal Head Start programs get the jab and will urge governors to require shots for both teachers and staff members.
“[Biden is] going to build on our mandates requirements, making it so that workers in the federal government or others have to get vaccinated, we’ve seen that work,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in an interview MSNBC. “We can’t declare with a magic wand from the federal government that every person has to be vaccinated. “School districts can do that. Leaders and states can push their school districts to do that. That’s important, companies can do that and make those requirements for their employees. That’s something some larger companies have done, and that’s a model. So those are all pieces the president will talk about today.”
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