Local governments that enforce COVID-19 vaccine mandates will be fined thousands of dollars, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday.
The mandate violates a state law, Senate Bill 2006, passed earlier this year, which mandates the government to allow people to enter government buildings to vaccinate people for COVID-19, usually referred to as a vaccine passport. known as, may not be required to provide proof. The law-enforcing Florida Department of Health’s rule will be effective Sept. 16. Violations of the law will result in a fine of $5,000 per person, the rule states.
Despite the law, governments in Orange and Lyon counties and in Gainesville have imposed vaccine passport requirements on employees.
DeSantis said in a news conference that he would face a $5,000 fine per violation if the requirements remained in place.
“It’s potentially millions and millions of dollars in fines,” he said.
Local government officials, however, have given no indication that the increased fines will lead to a change in policy.
“It is our belief that as an employer we uphold the right to require vaccination as a condition of employment,” Gainesville spokeswoman Shelby Taylor told news outlets in a statement.
Orange County Mayor Democrat Jerry Demings said Monday that county officials were unaware of the Florida Department of Health’s rule and would consider their legal options after analyzing it.
Demings announced the county’s mandate last month. County employees are required to be fully vaccinated against the virus that causes COVID-19 by the end of September.
More than 200 police officers and other county employees sued Gainesville’s requisition, alleging it violates their constitutional rights and claiming that their natural immunity, from getting and recovering from COVID-19, is Provides better protection than vaccines.
Some studies have indicated as much, but federal public health officials, who have set policies informing many of the regulations across the country, have downplayed the findings and recommends a COVID-19 vaccine even if people have natural immunity. continued to request.
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody, a Republican, on Monday filed a brief in support of the Gainesville activists.
DeSantis held a press conference with Gainesville and Orange County activists who are upset about the mandate, including Christine Damm, a Gainesville city employee, and a US Marine Corps veteran who has four children. That’s part of the suit.
“Florida state residents should not be given a mandate that requires the freedom to either lose their jobs or make their own informed medical decisions. I don’t believe it’s anyone’s business if the citizen next to you has to vaccinated or not,” Dam said.
“My body, my choice,” she said, using a refrain commonly used by pro-abortion activists.
While there are exceptions for religious or medical reasons outlined in the city’s mandate, Damm said she knows everyone who has applied for one has been denied.
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times