LOCAL NEWS

Protesters in Olympia say they ‘will not comply’ with COVID mandates

Aug 22, 2021, 1:47 PM | Updated: Aug 23, 2021, 11:04 am
protest, mandate...
People protest COVID mandates in Olympia on Aug. 22, 2021. (KIRO Radio, Hanna Scott)
(KIRO Radio, Hanna Scott)

Over 100 people gathered at the state Capitol in Olympia on Sunday to protest Governor Inslee’s mask mandate and mandatory vaccine orders for certain state workers, as well as health care and K-12 workers.

Washington’s new mask mandate takes effect Monday

The crowd held signs that read, “I will not comply,” “Liberty over Tyranny,” and “Recall Inslee,” among others. Many in the crowd were health care workers who say the vaccine is too new to be safe. Others say they worry about the impact to their children — both how potential side effects to the vaccine might impact them long-term, and the loss of their rights into the future.

CDC: How COVID-19 vaccines work

Governor Inslee, the state secretary of health, and medical officers across the state have said all people should mask up or the delta variant will continue to spread and overwhelm hospitals. Medical workers at the rally contend the only reason hospitals would be overwhelmed will be due to staff shortages when staff are out of a job due to mandated vaccinations — whether that’s because they leave due to the mandate, or lose their jobs if they refuse to comply.

All 35 county health officials in Washington say the dramatic spike in COVID cases in the state in recent weeks is being fueled by the much more transmissible delta variant, and due to roughly 30% of people in Washington not being vaccinated. They warn the spike will continue without an increase in vaccination rates and could lead to even more restrictions.

While many protesters in Olympia said the mandates from Inslee are an overreach and abuse of power, multiple court rulings since the start of the pandemic have upheld Inslee’s authority and that of public health officials during the public health emergency.

Constitutional rights

There is no constitutional right in jeopardy under a vaccinate mandate. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1905 during the Jacobson v. Massachusetts case, to uphold the authority of states to enact a compulsory vaccination laws. 

Additionally, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has addressed that it’s legal under federal law for companies to require employees get vaccinated before entering the workplace. Exceptions are made for pregnancy, religious beliefs. and health complications. 

The EEO states: “The federal EEO laws do not prevent an employer from requiring all employees physically entering the workplace to be vaccinated for COVID-19, subject to the reasonable accommodation provisions of Title VII and the ADA and other EEO considerations.” 

Local News

Boeing...
Stephanie Klein

Boeing employees protest vaccine mandate in Everett

A few dozen people stood in the rain outside the Machinist union hall in Everett on Friday protesting the vaccine mandate Boeing announced this week.
1 day ago
bus, school, dress code, Kent School District...
Stephanie Klein

Seattle Public Schools will suspend 142 bus routes in anticipation of driver shortage

Seattle Public Schools says it has alerted parents that it's suspending school bus service on 142 routes -- or 24% -- due to staffing challenges.
1 day ago
Wallingford...
Nick Bowman

With focus on ‘preservation,’ Wallingford inches closer to historic district designation

A bid to acquire a national historic designation in Seattle's Wallingford neighborhood has continued to make significant progress over the last two years.
1 day ago
Vaccine mandate, Ferguson...
Nick Bowman

Judge denies request to halt vaccine mandate for Washington state employees

A federal judge denied a request on Friday to halt Washington's vaccine mandate for state workers ahead of an Oct. 18 deadline. 
1 day ago
Boeing, union...
Stephanie Klein

Machinists union set to bargain over COVID vaccine mandate with Boeing

Boeing's Machinist Union released a statement, acknowledging that a vaccine mandate is a divisive issue for members, asking employees to choose "between beliefs or their jobs."
1 day ago
King County Metro...
MyNorthwest Staff

King County Metro cancels another 80 early-morning trips on Friday

King County Metro has canceled another 80 early-morning trips on Friday, after canceling 26 trips on Thursday.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...

How to Have a Stress-Free Real Estate Experience

The real estate industry has adapted and sellers are taking full advantage of new real estate models. One of which is Every Door Real Estate.
...
IQ Air

How Poor Air Quality Is Affecting Our Future Athletes

You cannot control your child’s breathing environment 100% of the time, but you can make a huge impact.
...
Swedish Health Services

Special Coverage: National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer. The most technologically advanced treatment option in the Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform.
...
Marysville Police Department

Police Opportunities in a Growing, Supportive Washington Community

Marysville PD is looking for both lateral and entry level officers. Begin or continue your career in law enforcement for a growing, supportive community.
...
Comcast

Small, Minority-Owned Businesses in King County and Pierce County Can Now Apply For $10,000 Relief Grants Through Comcast RISE

Businesses in King County and Pierce County can apply beginning on October 1, 2021, at www.ComcastRISE.com for a chance to receive a $10,000 relief grant.
Courtesy of JWatch Photography....
Experience Anacortes

Summer Fun Activities in Anacortes

With minimal travel time required and every activity under the sun, Anacortes is the perfect vacation spot for all ages.
Protesters in Olympia say they ‘will not comply’ with COVID mandates