top of page

Chicago Threatens to Strip Retirement Benefits From Cops Who Retire Over Forced Vaccine Mandate

Chicago has upped its battle with police officers over the mandated COVID vaccine, issuing a statement Sunday night threatening the retirement benefits of officers who opt to retire from the force rather than submit to Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s COVID vaccine mandate and reporting system.

A copy of the notice was reported by WMAQ-TV reporter Mary Ann Ahern who posted a copy to Twitter:

The statement reads:

“TO BE READ AT ALL ROLL CALLS FOR SEVEN (7) CONSECUTIVE DAYS. This AMC message informs Department members of the consequences of disobeying a direct order to comply with the City of Chicago’s Vaccination Policy issued 8 October 2021 and being the subject of the resulting disciplinary investigation. A Department member, civilian or sworn, who disobeys a direct order by a supervisor to comply with the City of Chicago’s Vaccination Policy issued 8 October 2021 will become the subject of a disciplinary investigation that could result in a penalty up to and including separation from the Chicago Police Department. Furthermore, sworn members who retire while under a disciplinary investigation may be denied retirement credentials…”

Last week a Cook County judge barred the president of the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police John Catanzara from speaking out against Chicago’s COVID vaccine mandate and vaccine status reporting portal.

The Chicago Tribune reported Monday on the FOP’s response to Sunday’s threatening statement by police brass(excerpt):

The FOP, in response, sent a document to its members that provides language officers can use should they be asked to go to Internal Affairs and given a direct order to report their vaccination status through the city portal, according to multiple law enforcement sources. “Complying with this INVALID order and the violation of MY Bargaining, Constitutional and Civil Rights has furthermore caused me severe anxiety while challenging both my religious and moral beliefs. I am in fact complying with this because I am being forced to do so under complete duress and threats of termination,” the document reads. The union told members who receive a direct order from a supervisor to have that supervisor add their name to the FOP-provided document and advised members to keep a copy for themselves and send another to the union. According to a law enforcement source, the union also is urging members to turn on their body cameras and record the encounters, a call Chicago police union president John Catanzara has made before.

Lightfoot ordered back in August that all city employees must be vaccinated by October 15. The deadline was later modified, after objections by the police union, to the end of the year but with a proviso that unvaccinated workers submit to twice-weekly testing at their own expense. All workers must report their vaccine status through an online portal starting this Friday or face being put on no-pay status.

A summary by the Tribune of the battle between Lightfoot and the police union over the COVID vaccine mandate can be read at this link.

UPDATE: Lightfoot on Monday accused the police union of trying to “induce an insurrection.”


bottom of page