John Catanzara, president of the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), is urging agents to ignore Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
“Do not fill in the portal information,” Catanzara . told union members, referring to the portal where city employees must report their vaccination status by Friday or enter “no-pay” status.
“I’ve made my status very clear on the vaccine, but I don’t believe the city has the authority to oblige anyone, let alone that information about your medical history,” he added.
Catanzara warned that if Chicago enforces the mandate and the officers refuse to comply, “It’s safe to say the city of Chicago will have a police force of 50% or less this weekend.”
A police force at half capacity should work wonders in a city that has a dozen people shot on Tuesday, including two children.
FOP President John Catanzara has vowed to sue Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s government if it tries to enforce the mandate, urging ordinary officers not to abide. https://t.co/8A1lreOYf9
— WGN Morning News (@WGNMorningNews) October 13, 2021
RELATED: Florida’s Leon County fined $3.5 million for violating state ban on vaccination passports
‘Hold the line’
Catanzara called on Mayor Lori Lightfoot for trying to scare people into compliance, a tactic that blue state and local politicians have perfected during the pandemic.
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“It’s the city’s clear attempt to compel officers with a ‘chicken little, the sky is fall’, compliance — don’t fall for it,” he said. “Hold the line.”
In response, Lightfoot accused the head of the police union of racism.
“John Catanzara says many things, many insulting, racist and foolish,” the mayor replied.
This is the same mayor who denied access to white reporters getting interviews with her last spring.
Lightfoot on Catanzara continues: “He threatens lawsuits. I say bring it.”
— Alice Yin (@byaliceyin) October 13, 2021
RELATED: Trey Gowdy Explodes Chicago Teachers Union: ‘If You Don’t Want To Teach, Go Do Something Else’
Fighting back against the mandate
Catanzara informed members that the FOP has filed a class action complaint designed to cover “everything under the sun” that police officers could lose if they defy Chicago’s vaccination mandate, including pay and benefits.
However, Lightfoot remains undeterred by the threat of a lawsuit.
“He’s threatening lawsuits,” she said. “I say bring it.”
The Chicago Police Union chief is calling on members to defy the city’s requirement to report their COVID-19 vaccination status by Friday or be placed on unpaid leave. The mayor says the city is willing to deal with any consequences of the demand. https://t.co/WuftEC3afw
— The Associated Press (@AP) October 14, 2021
Lightfoot leads the way when it comes to draconian measures to fight the pandemic. Just not for her.
She once ordered city dwellers to cancel Thanksgiving plans even as she celebrated Joe Biden’s election victory, shouting masklessly into a megaphone while surrounded nearby by other revelers, clearly in violation of her own guidelines at the time.
— Lori Lightfoot (@LoriLightfoot) Nov 8, 2020
lightfoot defended defying her own mask guidelines by saying she should celebrate Biden’s win because it’s been a tough year and she needed “relief.”
Chicago’s Brotherhood Order of Police supported former President Donald Trump in the 2020 election.
“President Trump has shown time and again that he supports our law enforcement officers and understands the challenges our members face every day,” the statement read.
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