Panama City, FL –
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (The News Service of Florida) – Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday that Florida will fight local and federal COVID-19 vaccination mandates for public and private workers, warning that such requirements will have a ” huge impact ”on public safety.
Appearing in Alachua County with two members of the Republican state cabinet and individuals espousing anti-vaccination theories, DeSantis said the vaccination requirements would force first responders who have worked for over d ‘a year of protecting people amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“These mandates go too far and they will be very destructive for a lot of very, very good people,” DeSantis said at Monday’s event at Clark Plantation in Newberry.
The event focused on a vaccination requirement adopted by the city of Gainesville commission as well as guidelines issued by President Joe Biden requiring vaccinations for certain public and private employees.
DeSantis suggested he could fight local immunization requirements through a new state law that gives him the power to override local emergency measures adopted in response to public health disasters. The law provides for fines of up to $ 5,000 per violation.
Under DeSantis’ leadership, the state has used the law to challenge “vaccination passport” requirements for cruise ship passengers and to fight mask requirements from local school districts for students.
“We’re going to help here with the government issue, with our authority that we have, but also with the Biden mandate,” DeSantis added. “You know, it’s beyond the simple mandate. What they’ve been doing throughout COVID, they come back and find a law from decades ago, they find some obscure regulation, and then they take that as a pretext to be able to make ridiculous and unforeseen expansions of government power. . “
DeSantis, who said people shouldn’t be ‘forced’ to get vaccinated, was joined by several city and county employees who alleged the COVID-19 vaccine ‘changes your RNA’ and complained to be forced into a “fate that will be far worse than contracting and recovering” from the virus. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention disputes these claims.
DeSantis, who swept aside speculation last week that he was setting the stage for a White House term in 2024 as “nonsense”, was also joined by Attorney General Ashley Moody and CFO Jimmy Patronis during the meeting. Monday’s event, which was announced by the governor’s office but had overtones of a campaign rally.
Cabinet members joined with DeSantis in saying the state will support workers who oppose vaccination requirements imposed by local authorities in areas such as Orange and Leon counties as well as Gainesville, where the city council narrowly voted Aug. 5 to require employees to show proof of vaccination by Oct. 1 or be fired. The requirement comes with medical, disability and religious exemptions.
More than 200 Gainesville employees – including police and firefighters – have filed a complaint alleging that the vaccination warrant violates the state’s ban on so-called vaccine passports. Moody filed a brief Monday in support of Gainesville workers challenging the mandate.
“We have seen a lot of egregious examples where politicians in our country thought they had a lot more power than they actually had, locking people in their homes, preventing them from participating in religious ceremonies and worship. . Unacceptable, ”Moody said Monday. “They didn’t have the power. The courts agreed with this. And now you have city officials saying they’re going to fire the employees if they don’t take a vaccine. It’s illegal. This directly contradicts Florida law.
But Leon County Administrator Vincent Long pushed back Monday afternoon, saying “political rhetoric continues to dangerously exacerbate fear and confusion” surrounding vaccinations.
“In a public health emergency, clarity of information remains essential,” Long said in a prepared statement. “This is why I need to clarify that vaccinations as a condition of employment in Leon County are legal and will remain in effect. We will continue to act responsibly to ensure our operational readiness to meet the needs of our community and to keep our employees safe. “
According to the Florida Department of Health, the virus has claimed the lives of nearly 49,000 Floridians since March 2020, with 2,448 deaths added last week.
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber, whose city requires COVID-19 vaccinations for all new employees, also questioned DeSantis’ position.
“What state is he governor of? Because Florida currently leads the country in average daily COVID deaths and its response is to spread vaccine plots to ensure we maintain our # 1 ranking. God save us, ”Gelber tweeted.
On Friday, Biden expressed disappointment with DeSantis and other Republican governors who criticized White House guidelines requiring COVID-19 vaccinations and testing for large numbers of public and private workers, including some workers in the education.
“Look, I’m so disappointed that some Republican governors in particular have been so cavalier with the health of these children, so cavalier with the health of their communities,” Biden said. “We’re playing for real here. It is not a game.
Biden’s plan, in part, will require vaccination of workers in healthcare facilities that are part of the Medicare and Medicaid programs, executive workers, and contractors doing business with the federal government.
Biden is also asking the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration to develop a rule requiring weekly vaccinations or tests for people from all employers with 100 or more workers.
But Patronis said Monday the vaccination requirements were issued by “the same people who brought us Obamacare.”
“So let’s recognize that this is nothing more than the 2.0 big part of government health care,” he added.
DeSantis pledges to fight federal, local vaccination mandates Source link DeSantis pledges to fight federal, local vaccination mandates