(NewsReady.com) – President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandates have resulted in a number of negative consequences, but it’s about to get worse for one state. An Arizona county is looking at releasing jail inmates because a vaccine mandate could leave them short of corrections officers.
Pima County has plans to release inmates if jail deputies do not meet their vaccination deadline. https://t.co/EzixEZUheQ
— Lillian Boyd (@lillianmboyd1) December 9, 2021
In November, the Board of Supervisors in Pima County, AZ, voted to force all county employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by the end of this year, or face termination. Around 400 staff members are currently unvaccinated, including 151 corrections officers at the Pima County Adult Detention Center – around 40% of the total. Corrections Sergeant Thomas Frazier told journalists that the jail is already understaffed, and trying to run it without the unvaccinated officers would be “dangerous.”
Now, acting County Administrator Jan Lesher (D) has set up a group of officials to look into how the number of inmates might be “reduced safely” if officers are fired on January 1. She also revealed that this is the thin end of the wedge. In a memo to officials, she said that after the jail population has been reduced to support the vaccine mandate, she hopes “we will continue to work to reduce unnecessary use of incarceration.” In other words, letting more criminals avoid jail.
County Supervisor Steve Christy (R), the lone dissenter against the vaccine mandate, said the plan “makes no sense.” Meanwhile, County Sheriff Chris Nanos denies inmates will be released and says he could draft in his deputies to help run the jail – but 39% of his department is also facing termination. The vaccine mandate has left the county a choice between releasing the criminals it already has in jail, or diverting its deputies from catching any more.
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