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Cops reject vaccination deal; firefighters try to appeal vaccination ruling; teachers worry vaccine mandate will hit minority teachers hardest

Live Boston reports members of the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association voted 847-26 to reject a "memorandum of agreement" with the city over the vaccine mandate scheduled to go into effect next week.

Meanwhile, unions representing firefighters and police superior officers and detectives held a press conference at Florian Hall in Dorchester to announce they were appealing a Suffolk Superior Court judge's ruling that the city could go ahead with the mandate for now.

After filing their appeal today with the Massachusetts Appeals Court, their lawyers will have to refile their documents tomorrow they weren't formatted properly - their filing didn't include an appendix with relevant rulings from the Suffolk case, let alone a table of contents for that.

The Globe reports minority teachers would make up a high percentage of the teachers who would be put on unpaid leave when the mandate goes into effect.

The Globe quoted one teacher who cited every single possible reason to oppose getting a shot: She's worried about the effect of shots on her fertility, she had Covid-19, she objects to the way some vaccination development may have involved testing with cell lines derived from aborted fetuses decades ago and she doesn't trust Big Pharma.

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Comments

I'd guess that they're trying to drag this out until the pandemic ends, but to do that I'd have to be a person who believes the pandemic will end, which I no longer am

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...but that doesn't mean THEY don't believe that. Hell, they probably believe the earth is flat and the tooth fairy left them those quarters.

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The pandemic is over when the person-in-charge says it's over. I'm expecting the president to declare the pandemic over this summer or fall, before the elections. That's the most logical time to do it.

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Police interact with the public by the minute, so grow up and get your shots. Firefighters run into burning buildings to save lives.

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And firefighters give CPR. And we need both able to work and not in the ER.

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"members of the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association voted 847-26 to reject a 'memorandum of agreement' with the city over the vaccine mandate scheduled to go into effect next week."

Only 26 cops recognized that their duty to the public should outweigh their ability to collectively bargain on requiring covid vaccinations IN THE MIDDLE OF A PANDEMIC.

I usually consider myself pro-union, but I imagine many (most?) other Boston taxpayers are done with BPD. After all the OT and medical leave scandals and now this, I bet they won't have ANY community support when their contract is up. We need a progressive chief who is actually willing to clean house.

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Next time the police union complains about anything that increases their work hazard, the city is justified in telling them to shut up.

COVID killed more police last year than all other causes, leading to the highest number of deaths in the line of duty since the 1930's.

BPPA has just voted that more police should die.

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BTU represents 10000 members, so low vaccination rate among them is a much bigger concern than BPD or BFD. They are also much more public facing.

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Yeah yeah yeah but anything to pile on just the cops.

(Shhh doesn’t matter that the teacher’s union, a very liberal organization, is also fighting this mandate).

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Maybe take a seat, and then when you have evidence that teachers are abusing their authority, placing themselves above the law, militantly covering up their fellow teachers’ misdeeds, stealing from the taxpayers, and murdering the innocent, come back to us again with your concern about “piling on”

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The vaccine mandate has something to do with police misconduct?

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So what you're saying is the vaccine mandate has something to do with police misconduct?

Not at all. What I'm saying is that police misconduct has something to do with people's general level of sympathy or lack thereof toward police.

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If the key aspect of this is that people should be vaccinated as a public health issue, why the vitriol when it is law enforcement and firefighters (who have been more adamant on this as a union, btw) versus sympathy towards the larger number of educators that are unvaccinated? One could argue that the educators interact with more people on a daily basis and could be greater vectors for spread.

The virus doesn't care what job a person does. It's just looking for a host.

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People don’t compartmentalize that way. For better or worse, they’re more sympathetic towards people they like than towards people they don’t like.

Note that I’m not at all addressing the relative reasonableness of the teachers union position and that of the police union; I’m specifically addressing the question of why one evokes a more vitriolic response than the other.

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or are you just assuming that since teachers are usually decent people

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That Globe story about teachers. Woof.

Fire them. Teachers in classrooms should have the maximum protection from preventable disease for their own sake and the sake of their students. Refusing to get that protection from the vaccine that’s been available to them for a year and proven safe is fully disqualifying.

(Ditto medical workers, police, firefighters and EMS.)

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...one teacher who cited every single possible reason to oppose getting a shot: She's worried about the effect of shots on her fertility, she had Covid-19, she objects to the way some vaccination development may have involved testing with cell lines derived from aborted fetuses decades ago and she doesn't trust Big Pharma.

Would you want that person teaching your child? I wouldn't. Deluded Flavor-Ade drinkers don't belong at the front of a classroom.

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Then one assumes that you have a college degree. Therefore, one would assume that you went to primary school, middle school, and high school. Guess what? You needed at least the MMR vaccine to do all of that!

Stop whining, and get the damned shot. So tired of this….

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I’ve thought a lot about this, and it’s not the argument I’d make. I’m glad for every effective teacher, but I expect teachers to do what’s necessary to protect themselves and their students — and vaccination is a key piece of that — and if they won’t then they shouldn’t be teaching.

(Shoot, I won’t even judge teachers for nutty antivaxxer views, I won’t sweat the irony of medical professionals rejecting basic medicine (vaccines) — whatever, man! I do however expect you to protect yourself and others.)

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The tone of the Globe coverage and the progressive conversation on social media about vax holdouts are hilariously different when talking about police and firefighters versus teachers of color. The first responders are intransigent scumbags who can be summarily fired, union contract be damned, while the teachers are sympathetic figures we can't afford to lose and we have to listen to their union president's concerns.

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See how things work around here. It's weird.

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Atatiana Jefferson, if she were still around, might be able to give you a little insight into the difference between people’s attitude toward police vs teachers.

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one of these groups has spent decades taking any good will it accidentally accrues and publicly torching it, then blaming the city for refusing to put out the ensuing fires. Meanwhile, the teachers' union has mostly coasted under the radar, because it's avoided shooting itself in the foot by (for example) publishing an official newsletter telling its members to prepare for the coming race war.

Yup, I can't imagine why anyone would treat the police and teachers' unions any differently.

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When you have a 25%+ failure rate at your job, perhaps the teacher's union should get a little more heat.

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So, what's the failure rate for the police?

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Teachers can continue to spread the virus and kill people, but they’ve been quiet in the past so it’s ok? What kind of backwards logic is this?

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Teachers can continue to spread the virus and kill people, but they’ve been quiet in the past so it’s ok? What kind of backwards logic is this?

This particular bit of this thread isn't about the virus, it's about why it is that people don't like the police as much as they like teachers, are sick of cutting the police slack on many fronts, and why a significant part of police culture seems to be to get all butt-hurt and thin-skinned and complain about persecution every time they discover that the public views them with anything less than worshipful adoration.

And yet they never seem to stop and ask "why?" Ever read the old Pax Centurion, published by the duly elected leadership of the police union and therefore representative of attitudes, values, and positions broadly held by the rank and file?

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No sympathy. None. The vaccine is safe and effective. We're dealing with a very vocal minority of the public and these unions. Get vaxxed or fire them all. Enough is enough. Tired of coddling these people.

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While not as important as preserving the public health, it seems the city has a fiduciary responsibility to keep the health care costs incurred for treating its employees down.

The unvaccinated are likely running up much higher average per patient costs, including relying on more expensive treatments.

Interesting that the same general political demographic tends to oppose universal healthcare, in part because they don't want to pay for *other people's* bad choices.

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Headline says "Mostly educators of color could face termination" but there is no evidence to back that up--only a vague statement from the BTU Prez. It's not even clear how many teachers face termination, not to mention their demographics. Should this be a concern? Sure. Do we have any idea what the situation is? No. Terrible journalism.

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If it was all white people that were going to be terminated then that’s ok, but all minority that’s a problem? We’re in a pandemic with people dying left and right and there are three effective and safe vaccines that have been out for a while. Get the jab! I don’t care what color your skin is.

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"The Globe reports minority teachers would make up a high percentage of the teachers who would be put on unpaid leave when the mandate goes into effect."

No. A very high percentage (100%) of unvaccinated teachers, regardless of their races, would be put on unpaid leave when the mandate goes into effect.

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And in Georgia, 100% of people without proper identification will be ineligible to vote, regardless of their races.

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You're so right, just like during Jim Crow, 100% of people who couldn't pass "literacy tests" were ineligible to vote, regardless of their races...oh wait

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Are you saying that only some of the unvaccinated BPS staff will be put on unpaid leave?

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forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal their bread.

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I'll tell you why you need to be vaccinated to teach after you tell me why you need to identify yourself to vote.

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You were claiming that the policy was race blind. I merely pointed to another race blind policy. That voter ID is seen as different might be a valid argument, but at the end of the day, if you are going to note the racial blindness of one, feel free to be open to the claim for other cases.

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One policy is a deliberate and obvious back door to target minorities.

The other is a sensible public health measure intended to protect everyone and save our health care system.

But you probably knew that, didn't you?

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The BTU has not been opposing vaccinations, and in fact pushed to allow their members to move up the line a year ago. Tang looked at the numbers and realized that the effect is that minority teachers will be disproportionately affected by this change in the policy. By the same measure, Americans overall support requiring ID to vote, and not necessarily for racist reasons. Those opposing such measures similarly can show data wherein African Americans will be disproportionately affected by such requirements. That people are indifferent to the effect of the racial makeup of our teaching pool in the city amazes me.

As far as protecting the health system, I remember when the word was that having 80% vaccinated would do that. So much for expertise in infectious disease control.

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The cops and firefighters should have used the worrying about their minority members angle.

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... the teachers' union joining the fray actually strengthens Wu's political position here, in that she can take the same hard line against all of them regardless of whether the union is friendly to her base. The anti-vax concerns expressed by teachers in the Globe article do not seem compelling at all.

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