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First responders nationwide resist COVID vaccine mandates

Virus Outbreak First Responders Vaccines
Posted at 9:38 AM, Sep 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-06 12:38:57-04

(AP) — The resurgence of COVID-19 this summer and the national debate over vaccine requirements have created a fraught situation for the nation’s first responders, who are dying in larger numbers but pushing back against mandates.

It’s a stark contrast from the beginning of the vaccine rollout when first responders were prioritized for shots.

The mandates affect tens of thousands of police officers, firefighters and others on the front lines across the country, many of whom are spurning the vaccine — despite mandates’ consequences that range from weekly testing to suspension to termination — even though the virus is now the leading cause of law enforcement line-of-duty deaths.