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Chicago police union boss on vaccine mandate fight: 'Welcome to day three of 'The Hunger Games''

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The Chicago police union’s first vice president has issued a blistering attack on Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s vaccine mandate, likening it to “The Hunger Games,” and warned younger officers not to give in to pressure. 

The remarks came in a nearly 10-minute video posted by Fraternal Order of Police First Vice President Michael Mette on his Facebook page. 

“Welcome to day three of ‘The Hunger Games,’ where we find out who the city is going to offer up as tribute,” Mette says in the video, invoking the book and film series about a dystopian world in which children must fight to the death for the entertainment of wealthy residents. 

Mette’s remarks were aimed at a city policy requiring that all city employees, including police officers, enter their vaccine status in the city’s data portal. 

On Tuesday, Police Superintendent David Brown said 21 department employees had been placed on “no-pay status” for refusing to provide the information. He said the department needed to talk to hundreds of officers who had thus far not provided the information. 

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Mette encouraged those officers to stay their ground and blasted city leaders for not meeting at the bargaining table. 

“If we fail to make them bargain with us on this issue, what issue is next?” Mette said. 

Mette, who has been with the department 18 years, told “young coppers” they have a “long way to go.” 

“Don’t think it can’t get worse,” Mette said. 

Fox News has reached out to Mette and the mayor’s office for further comment but did not hear back before publication. 

Chicago's Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks during a science initiative event at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois, July 23, 2020.  

Chicago’s Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks during a science initiative event at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois, July 23, 2020.  
(REUTERS/Kamil Krzaczynski)

City officials and the Fraternal Order of Police have been at odds over the city’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate. Cook County Judge Cecilia Horan has ordered the union’s president, John Catanzara, to stop publicly encouraging his members to disobey the city’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

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Later Wednesday, Horan refused the union’s request to recuse herself from the case. The union wanted Horan to recuse herself because of what its attorney, Joel D’Alba, called the “appearance of impropriety.” 

The law firm where Horan was a partner before she became a judge had been involved with a task force that helped create a consent decree aimed at overhauling the police force a few years ago. 

“I did not know about the task force report at all when I was a partner at the firm,” Horan said during a hearing. 

Horan’s order is set to expire next week, but an attorney for the city told the judge that he would ask her to extend it and expand it beyond union officials during a hearing.

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“There have been mass email communications coming from officials other than Mr. Catanzara that we believe, if they do not violate the letter of your honor’s order, violate the spirit,” said attorney Michael Warner.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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