MILWAUKEE — Monday is the last day unionized Milwaukee firefighters and police officers can go without being vaccinated. After Monday, anyone who hasn't gotten their shots must wear a mask at all times on duty except under certain circumstances, or else risk disciplinary action.
On Dec. 23, the city of Milwaukee and Milwaukee Professional Firefighters Association (Local 215) announced they signed an agreement requiring union members get the vaccine. The day before, on Dec. 22, the city announced it and the Milwaukee Police Association (MPA) had also come to agreement on a vaccine mandate.
The agreements state union members found in violation of the agreement will face disciplinary action, including "suspensions and, for repeated violations, possible discharge."
Officials in statements said that is similar to the consequences other city of Milwaukee workers face for violating vaccination requirements.
According to both agreements, those who do not get vaccinated must mask up except when eating, drinking, showering or sleeping. If unionized employees are previously vaccinated, they will receive two hours of compensation, the agreements state.
The vaccine memorandum will be in place for the rest of the year.
According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, COVID-19 is the leading cause of death for law enforcement officers in the U.S.
The study found 301 federal, state, tribal and local law enforcement officers died because of COVID-19 in 2021.