The Chicago Police Department has 35 officers on no-pay status for refusing to enter their vaccination status into the city’s portal, police Superintendent David Brown said Monday.
In a news conference Monday morning, Brown said the number of officers on no-pay status has fluctuated and is down from about 50 officers at one point The increase means almost 78% of the more than 12,000 department employees, a number that includes sworn officers and civilian employees, has disclosed their vaccination status, Brown said.
Of those in the portal, 77.6% are vaccinated, down from about 80% at one point, Brown said, meaning as more people enter the portal, the percentage of those who have gotten the COVID-19 vaccine has decreased.
Brown said the department’s’ main priority is to get full compliance with the city’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate that requires everyone employed by the city to report whether they’ve gotten the vaccine and, if they haven’t, to get a coronavirus test twice a week.
He said his leadership will also continue to encourage officers to get the vaccine if they haven’t already, telling them it can save their lives, their co-workers’ lives and the lives of people in the community they interact with.
Michael Warner, an attorney for the city, said officer compliance with the vaccine mandate “continues to tick up” even though Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara posted videos last week that advised officers to not update their vaccine status in the city’s portal.
Last month, a judge issued a temporary restraining order against Catanzara, prohibiting him from making public statements that encourage members not to report their COVID-19 vaccine status to the city.
“Currently we don’t see the need for immediate injunctive relief, but the situation is fluid,” Warner said.