ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona AG files civil rights lawsuit over Tucson’s COVID vaccine mandate

Aug 30, 2022, 8:00 PM

(Pixabay Photo)...

(Pixabay Photo)

(Pixabay Photo)

PHOENIX – Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich filed a civil rights lawsuit Tuesday over the city of Tucson’s year-old COVID-19 vaccine policy.

The complaint submitted in Maricopa County Superior Court argues that the August 2021 vaccine mandate discriminated against city employees on the basis of religion and disability.

The Attorney General’s Office said in a press release it was contacted by “numerous” Tucson employees who accused the state’s second-largest city of discrimination and retaliation.

Under the Tucson policy, unvaccinated city employees could request exemptions for religious or medical reasons.

The lawsuit alleges that city created confusion in the way it implemented the policy, leading in some cases to disciplinary action, including unpaid suspensions, against employees seeking exemptions.

The city also allegedly provided benefits to vaccinated employees that weren’t given to those who sought exemptions based on their religious beliefs or medical conditions.

Many of the employees impacted were members of the fire or police departments, the Attorney General’s Office said.

“Tucson dictated a widespread vaccine mandate without regard to its impact on the liberties and civil rights of its employees,” Brnovich said in the release. “Many of those affected are first responders, and it’s our turn to be there for them. The city’s misguided vaccine mandate is an ugly example of government overreach that we must vigorously oppose.”

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Arizona AG files civil rights lawsuit over Tucson’s COVID vaccine mandate