Paramedics union says vaccine mandate supporters have a ‘propensity for evil’


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The local paramedics’ union says it will work to communicate more clearly in the future after a series of tweets Thursday denouncing vaccination mandates and calling for support for “authoritarian” mandates.

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In the tweets, the Twitter account of CUPE Local 2974, representing Essex-Windsor EMS staff, said the vaccination mandates introduced to prevent the spread of COVID-19 were “a beautiful and fantastic lie”. and that those who continue to support the mandates must be “authoritarian and have a propensity for evil.”

“Time will not protect the accomplice. The truth will eventually come out and these policies will be etched in stone as to which side those in power stood on,” the tweets read, while adding that it is against divisiveness.

“Those too afraid to defend freedom will be the sacrificial pawns, used to protect the powerful.”

In a subsequent tweet, the union said it made the comments, particularly those accusing mandates supporters of having a propensity for evil, “tongue in cheek.” The tweets had not been deleted, and as of Friday night the initial tweet had been liked nearly 3,500 times.

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But not everyone agreed with the message: Essex-Windsor EMS chief Bruce Krauter said the tweets did not represent the department’s position.

“Essex-Windsor EMS is aware of recent social media posts regarding vaccines, vaccination mandates and vaccination policies made by the local union representing our paramedics,” Krauter said in a statement.

“These posts do not represent the position of Essex-Windsor EMS or Essex County, which have a COVID-19 vaccination policy and safety protocols in place to protect the public and staff.”

County officials said 98.6% of EMS employees complied with the county’s vaccination policy.

CUPE Ontario has acknowledged a “worrying Twitter feed” posted by the Windsor-Essex local.

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“CUPE has always encouraged its members to get vaccinated to protect themselves, their families and their communities. But the work is undeniably unfinished,” Niko Georgiadis, chair of CUPE’s provincial ambulance committee, and Fred Hahn, president of CUPE Ontario, said in a joint statement.

In a follow-up statement posted on social media on Friday, Local 2974 President James Jovanovic said the local union supports member vaccinations and encouraged its members to “freely choose COVID-19 vaccinations. saying the union could both support vaccination and oppose vaccination policies. .

  1. Windsor Town Hall is shown on Sunday May 23, 2021.

    City of Windsor moves to replace employees who refused COVID-19 vaccine

  2. The Essex County Civic Center is shown in this file photo.

    Essex County makes COVID-19 vaccination mandatory for all staff

“The purpose of the thread was to spark open debate and have a shared dialogue; It is clear that it was not interpreted that way,” Jovanovic said in a statement.

Jovanovic did not return a request for comment from The Star on Friday.

However, Jovanovic wrote that the union believes in open dialogue and that society must “end defamation, division and hatred”.

“The message was not to speak for all members, all paramedics or the local community in which we serve, except to say that we should be free to continue to engage through an understanding and appreciation of each personal and lived experience.”

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