Commission requests report on LAPD COVID vaccine mandate – .

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Commission requests report on LAPD COVID vaccine mandate – .


The Los Angeles Police Commission on Tuesday asked the LAPD to report back to it on the possibility and legality of a COVID-19 vaccination warrant for officers and assignments of its unvaccinated staff – who represent nearly half of the department.
Civilian members of the commission asked for the information at their weekly virtual meeting after citing reports in The Times over the weekend that showed vaccination rates at public safety agencies in Los Angeles and California were lagging behind those of the state’s overall population.

Only about 52% of Los Angeles police officers are at least partially vaccinated, compared to 64% of Los Angeles residents aged 16 and over and about 72% of adult Californians, the Times reported. Only around 51% of the city’s firefighters are at least partially vaccinated.

Commissioner William Briggs said the low vaccination rate among officers, combined with the fact that not all officers wear masks, raised concerns for him, especially given the city’s obligation to ensure the safety of its own employees and members of the public.

If the department does not require vaccinations and ensure that all officers wear masks, “it could be argued that we are putting the public at risk,” Briggs said.

“The only option I see is for us to make vaccination mandatory for the department,” Briggs said. “I would like some kind of study to be done to find out whether this can happen or not. “

Commissioner Lou Calanche said she would like information on the assignments and duties of LAPD employees who are not vaccinated, “just so we know where they are in the department.”

LAPD chief Michel Moore said top LAPD commanders and police union officials continue to urge officers to get vaccinated and pledge to follow city staff guidelines and national guidelines and federal work place related to COVID-19.

He said 65% of LAPD staff have been partially or fully vaccinated or are suspected of having natural antibodies that have previously contracted COVID-19. To date, more than 2,700 LAPD staff have been infected and nine have died out of more than 12,000.

Moore said that while the department’s once-high weekly infection rate has fallen to zero over the past two weeks, he remains concerned about the threat of the coronavirus and its new variants – more than a third of the department has no vaccine or natural vaccine. protection and remains at high risk.

“That’s a big number for me and embarrassing,” Moore said.

At the same time, Moore said he had been in contact with city and department personnel officials and the city attorney’s office, and was told that requiring officers to do so. vaccinating “is out of our reach at this stage” legally.

He said he would incorporate this advice and information on the assignments of unvaccinated officers into a formal report to the commission.

The city attorney’s office said any advice it gave Moore on the matter is confidential.

In the Times Sunday article, Captain Stacy Spell, a spokesperson for the LAPD, said any discussion of a warrant before COVID-19 vaccines get full clearance from the State Food and Drug Administration United, rather than the emergency clearance they currently have, is “premature.” “

Assn. of Chiefs of Police, a respected national police leadership organization, said police departments may require vaccines under federal law, but may need to make religious or medical exceptions. He noted that police departments already require officers to get vaccinated against other medical threats such as tetanus and hepatitis.

The board of directors of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, the union that represents grassroots officers, said it would generally oppose a vaccination warrant, but will continue to urge officers to get vaccinated and talk to their doctors about their concerns.

Police Commission President Eileen Decker asked commission staff to work with Moore to produce the report, but did not set a deadline for the response.

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