Tucson Employees Face Firing If They Don't Get Vaccinated

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — The Tucson City Council voted Tuesday to require that all city employees must get vaccinated against COVID-19 by Dec. 1 or face getting fired.

Tucson Mayor Regina Romero and council members Lane Santa Cruz, Karin Uhlich and Steve Kozachik voted for the measure while Paul Cunningham, Nikki Lee and Richard Fimbres opposed.

Council members cited high levels of the coronavirus persisting in Pima County.

As of last week, around 300 employees hadn’t been vaccinated or received an exemption.

The city’s police and fire departments each had under 100 employees who weren’t in compliance.

More than 90 percent of Tucson police officers and firefighters are fully vaccinated, compared to the city’s general population at about 52 percent.

In August, the council passed an ordinance implementing a vaccine mandate for its nearly 4,000 employees.

Employees were facing five-day suspensions without pay if they didn’t get vaccinated.

According to the updated ordinance, Tucson employees who haven’t received at least one shot of the vaccine and have not received an approved exception or accommodation from the city by Dec. 1 will receive a termination notice as soon as Dec. 3.