Last week, media outlets reported that Leon County has been assessed a $3.57 million dollar penalty by the Florida Department of Health due to that government’s requirement that all employees be vaccinated against the coronavirus. The following day Governor DeSantis said he believed the Florida Legislature should pass a law that would also penalize businesses that require their employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
In reaction to the Governor’s actions and words, Florida Democratic Party Spokesperson José Dante Parra issued the following statement:
“DeSantis issuing state fines to any local government that requires employees to be vaccinated and his threat to penalize companies that do the same are dangerous moves that will only serve to extend the current public health crisis. The overwhelming consensus reached by the scientific community is that the best way to control the spread of the COVID-19 virus is to vaccinate the highest possible proportion of the population. Studies show that getting vaccinated protects individuals from the risk of severe illness, hospitalization and death.
“The $3.57 million penalty issued by DeSantis to Leon County is a direct attack on local government officials who are working tirelessly to protect their community from COVID-19. It is a disgusting scare tactic meant to intimidate other local governments in Florida and discourage them from taking the necessary steps to help keep their constituents from contracting this terrible disease.
“We must hold our elected officials accountable and remove people like DeSantis from office who are putting politics before the well-being of Floridians. It is critical that we continue to get shots into citizens’ arms to ensure a healthy Florida.”