The city council voted 4-3 on Tuesday to approve a mandate that city employees get vaccinated or lose their jobs by Dec. 1, the Associated Press reported. Around 300 of the city’s nearly 4,000 employees have refused the shot as of last week.
“It’s unfathomable that after a year as tough as last, the Tucson City Council voted to FIRE unvaccinated city employees,” Ducey wrote of the policy. “The state Legislature has spoken on this issue — they want Arizonans and their sincerely held beliefs to be protected from overreaching mandates.”
Ducey wrote a letter to Tucson City Attorney Mike Rankin, noting that Arizona law requires employers to “provide a reasonable accommodation” if an employee cites sincerely held religious beliefs as a reason for not taking the vaccine.
He said public reports did not suggest that Tucson’s vaccine mandate includes such an accommodation and warned that this legal requirement remains in effect, even though some parts of the law banning vaccine mandates were struck down as unconstitutional.
“I took an oath to uphold Arizona’s laws and ensure they are faithfully executed, and I will continue to do so,” Ducey declared. “My office has informed the City of Tucson that their policy is in conflict with the law and, as such, should be rescinded.”
Ducey ended his message by encouraging “all Arizonans to get the vaccine against COVID-19,” calling the jab “the best way of keeping you and your loved ones safe.”