Lancaster, California, Mayor R. Rex Parris, a Republican who has served since 2008, called it a “no-brainer that if you have contact with the public that requires you to be within 6-feet of them you have to be vaccinated or we’ll help you find another job in the city to do until this crisis is over.”
Those who refuse could be suspended without pay.
“We have an absolute right to deal with public health issues and do whatever’s necessary to protect the public health,” he told FOX 11.
Parris said he thinks Americans should have the right to decide if they want to get the vaccine but city employees who work with the public need to think about others’ health.
<strong>Mayor R. Rex Parris has served the city of Lancaster since 2008. (City of Lancaster)</strong> ( )
“There are some risks” with the vaccine, “but the risks of not getting it outweighs them,” Parris said.
The White House has received pushback over President Biden’s recent call for a door-to-door effort across the country that would involve volunteers giving vaccine information to those unsure about getting it.
“How about don’t knock on my door,” Rep. Dan Crenshaw, R-Texas, tweeted on July 6. “You’re not my parents. You’re the government. Make the vaccine available, and let people be free to choose. Why is that concept so hard for the left?”
A hospital in Houston also made national news earlier this summer when more than 150 employees were fired or quit for refusing to get the vaccine, which it decided to require for workers.
“It is unfortunate that today’s milestone of Houston Methodist becoming the safest hospital system in the country is being overshadowed by a few disgruntled employees,” Marc Boom, CEO of Houston Methodist Hospital, said last month.
Nurse Jennifer Bridges, a leader of the workers who chose not to be vaccinated, told the Houston Press during a protest, “I’m tired of being controlled and I’m tired of people trying to tell me what to do.” She was later fired.
“I had COVID last summer, I don’t need that vaccine, and Methodist did not care about that, that was not an option at all,” she told Sean Hannity last month.
Back in Lancaster, Parris told FOX 11 he would implement the vaccine requirement as an emergency order immediately if there were no objections by the city council at their Tuesday night meeting.
Labor lawyer Angela Reddock-Wright told the station employers have the right to mandate vaccines for employees with the exception of health and religious excuses.
“It is inconceivable to me that it is acceptable for a city employee to knowingly risk exposing someone in the public to a life-threatening disease,” Parris told KABC-TV.
Parris said the criticism from some in his own party doesn’t bother him. “If you want to attribute it to an insane leftist mayor – I don’t care what you call me. Just don’t kill people,” KABC reported.
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has reported a recent spike in cases due in part to the highly contagious delta variant.