Mayor calls to impose vax mandate on San Diego Police Officers union

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Posted at 11:10 AM, Nov 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-19 21:19:22-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — With the San Diego Police Officers Union and the city at an impasse over San Diego's coronavirus vaccine mandate, Mayor Todd Gloria is calling on the City Council to impose the mandate on the union.

In a statement Friday, the mayor said the city has reached agreements with five of its six labor unions to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 1. The statement says, however, that the city remains at a negotiation roadblock with the San Diego Police Officers Association. As such, the mayor will ask the City Council to impose the mandate on the union at a public meeting Nov. 29.

Under the mandate, city employees must be fully vaccinated by Dec. 1 as a condition of continuing employment. The city says it will consider medical and religious exemptions on a case-by-case basis.

“The way out of this pandemic is through vaccines – and the City of San Diego will lead by example,” Mayor Todd Gloria said in a statement. “With City employees regularly interacting with members of the public, this vaccination mandate takes on even more necessity – not only to protect the public, but also to protect our city workers.”

Jack Schaeffer, president of the San Diego Police Officers Association, was not immediately available for comment. However, on Wednesday, he told ABC 10News should the mandate go through, expect a lot of turnover.

"There are people who are already in hiring processes, there are people who have already left, in other states, other cities, even our San Diego Sheriff's Department," he said.

Numbers released Friday by the city show about 59 percent, or 1,172 members of the Police Officers Association are fully vaccinated. For measure, the Firefighters Union reports 80 percent of its members, or 766, are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Since full vaccination requires two weeks post-inoculation, Wednesday was the deadline for city workers to be fully vaccinated against the virus by Dec. 1.