Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said this week that he has no plans to enforce a vaccine mandate in the department.
The reason: He said he does not want to lose a significant number of his workforce.
The mandate requires that all Los Angeles County employees be fully vaccinated by October 1 and have only exceptions for religious and medical reasons.
Villanueva, a Democrat, told guest host Raymond Arroyo on “The Ingraham Angle” on Friday that hundreds of sheriff’s staff have said they would be willing to lose their jobs rather than get the vaccine – and Los Angeles has too many crises as they floating homeless population to lose more deputies.
LOS ANGELES COUNTY MANDATES TAKE EFFECT FOR INDOOR BARS, NIGHTCLUBS; OTHER RULES COME IN NOVEMBER
He said the sheriff’s department was politically targeted with an employment freeze after already being down with more than 1,000 employees.
“This is so politicized, I can not in good conscience impose such a mandate,” he said.
He called the mandate “poorly thought out, poorly executed”.
“I’m not going to be a part of that,” he told Arroyo.
He added that he has been vaccinated and is urging the sheriff’s staff to get theirs but he will not impose it. The sheriff’s department employs about 18,000 workers.
The mandate was issued by executive order in August.
In July, Villanueva said he would not enforce a county mask mandate that was reintroduced following an increase in the Delta variant, claiming it was not “supported by science.”
More than 26,000 people have died from coronavirus in Los Angeles County, the country’s most populous county.
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Of the county’s approximately 10 million residents, 78% have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, and 69% are fully vaccinated, according to public health officials.
Despite declining numbers, the city of Los Angeles approved just one of the country’s most stringent vaccine mandates, requiring everyone to go to a bar, restaurant, mall, salon, gym and many other places to get vaccinated.