Apr 20, 2024  |  
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Elizabeth Allen

NextImg:Judge Rules for 7 Massachusetts State Troopers Who Lost Jobs for Refusing Vaccine

Seven Massachusetts State Troopers, who were previously suspended due to a COVID-19 vaccine mandate, have emerged victorious in their legal battle with the Massachusetts government, and will soon return to their jobs, as announced by The State Police Association of Massachusetts.

The association revealed that an independent arbitrator ruled in favor of the troopers, stating that the state police had violated their rights to anti-discrimination and affirmative action.

The troopers, in accordance with their sincerely held religious beliefs, were not granted “reasonable accommodations” by the now-former Massachusetts Governor, Charlie Baker, and the Department of State Police.

The contentious issue arose when Governor Baker signed an executive order in October 2021, mandating all executive branch employees to provide proof of vaccination by October 2021, or face disciplinary actions, including potential termination.

In April 2022, eleven Massachusetts State Troopers and one sergeant were terminated after refusing to comply with the vaccine mandate.

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Following the recent ruling by the arbitrator, seven of the previously suspended troopers will be reinstated to their positions with full seniority rights and all benefits, with the exception of interim earnings and/or unemployment compensation, according to the State Police union’s news release.

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Patrick McNamara, the President of the State Police Association of Massachusetts, expressed his satisfaction with the outcome and denounced Governor Baker’s executive order as an “attack on organized labor and the rights of our members.”

McNamara shared that the Association had filed a grievance on behalf of the suspended troopers back in October 2021, and had been committed to rectifying the situation ever since.

He described the grievance and arbitration process as lengthy and grueling, but the Association remained steadfast in their pursuit of justice against the perceived injustices of the Baker Administration.

McNamara criticized Governor Baker for refusing to engage with the Association and failing to work with them on finding a resolution. He believed that the administration had infringed on the troopers’ religious convictions, leading to their unjust dismissals.

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With the arbitrator’s decision now in their favor, the troopers can look forward to returning to their duties, ending the long and contentious legal battle that had ensued due to the vaccine mandate.

Let’s hope this is just the beginning for all of those who were forced out of their jobs over this government overreach mandate.

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