Nearly 50% of Chicago's 13,000 police force could go on unpaid leave for ...

Nearly 50% of Chicago's 13,000 police force could go on unpaid leave for ...
Nearly 50% of Chicago's 13,000 police force could go on unpaid leave for ...

Up to 6,500 Chicago cops could be placed on unpaid leave for thumbing their noses at the city's just-expired deadline to get the COVID vaccine after the police union president warned Mayor Lori Lightfoot of a possible strike, resulting in a judge issuing a temporary restraining order against the cop late Friday night.

The feud between Lightfoot and head of the Chicago Branch of the Fraternal Order of Police John Catanzara escalated when Lightfoot brought the fight to court and filed a Complaint for Injunctive Relief against the police union and Catanzara.

She said in Thursday's filing that the police union president was 'engaging in, supporting, and encouraging a work stoppage or strike'.

The FOP fired back and filed a lawsuit against the city, mayor and police Superintendent David Brown, asking for more intervention on the matter, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The feud between Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (pictured) and head of the Chicago Branch of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) John Catanzara started when Lightfoot announced a mandate requiring the city's 13,000 cops to disclose their vaccination status by October 15 or face unpaid leave

Head of the Chicago Branch of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) John Catanzara (pictured) has hinted at a strike in response and said that up to 6,500 Chicago cops could be left without a job

The feud between Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (left) and head of the Chicago Branch of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) John Catanzara (right) started when Lightfoot announced a mandate requiring the city's 13,000 cops to disclose their vaccination status by October 15 or face unpaid leave. Catanzara has hinted at a strike in response and said that up to 6,500 Chicago cops could be left without a job

Cook County Circuit Judge Cecilia Horan ruled that Catanzara was potentially causing irreparable harm if he continued making such statements. 

She muzzled Catanzara, ordering that he not make another statement, video or tweet discussing Lightfoot's mandate, which required all civic employees, including 13,000 sworn-in Chicago police officers to report their vaccine status by Friday, October 15, or face unemployment. 

Lightfoot brought her feud with the FOP to court and Cook County Circuit Judge Cecilia Horan (pictured) has since issued a temporary restraining order against Catanzara, effective until the next hearing on October 25

Lightfoot brought her feud with the FOP to court and Cook County Circuit Judge Cecilia Horan (pictured) has since issued a temporary restraining order against Catanzara, effective until the next hearing on October 25

Horan sided with Lightfoot, saying Catanzara was advocating for 'sedition' and 'anarchy' by directing cops to disobey government officials, according to the Tribune. 

The restraining order will be in place until October 25, which is when another hearing is set to take place to discuss the dueling lawsuits. 

Lightfoot appeared on CNN last night to discuss what the passing deadline means for the Chicago Police Department - the second-largest in the country. 

When asked how many officers disclosed their vaccination status as of  the deadline, Lightfoot said: 'Well we don't have final numbers yet but what we've been seeing throughout the week - I think as the reality has sunk in - is that we're seeing big leaps in compliance. 

'But we won't have final numbers obviously until after midnight tonight. We'll be verifying those numbers over the course of the weekend and then we'll let folks know.'

Lightfoot appeared on CNN last night and when asked how many officers disclosed their vaccination status of today, the deadline, Lightfoot said: 'Well we don't have final numbers yet.' She was sure to be 'very clear that this is a manufactured crisis by the Fraternal Order of Police...so let's consider the source'

Lightfoot appeared on CNN last night and when asked how many officers disclosed their vaccination status of today, the deadline, Lightfoot said: 'Well we don't have final numbers yet.' She was sure to be 'very clear that this is a manufactured crisis by the Fraternal Order of Police...so let's consider the source'

'It’s safe to say the city of Chicago will have a police force at 50 percent or less,' Catanzara said at one point in the vide message he recorded from his desk at the Fraternal Order of Police Union office on the city's West Side

'It’s safe to say the city of Chicago will have a police force at 50 percent or less,' Catanzara said at one point in the vide message he recorded from his desk at the Fraternal Order of Police Union office on the city's West Side

Just yesterday Catanzara took to YouTube to tell cops to ignore the mandate, calling it 'nonsense' and even hinting at a potential strike as he threatened that the city could be left without half or less of its regular officers 'this week and coming up'.

'You are under no obligation to respond or comply,' he said of the October 15 deadline for officers to disclose their vaccination status on an online forum. 

However, no unvaccinated cops were axed from their jobs on Friday because it will take time for the city's government to sort out who got vaccinated. 

'Once we understand that people have not complied with the simple request to say "yes" or "no" or that I'm going to take the testing option then yes, we will be moving forward and putting people into no-pay status,' Lightfoot said. 

In her statement, the mayor also cited 'the Illinois Public Labor Relations Act and Illinois common law which prohibits sworn officers from engaging in a strike'. 

'By predicting that 50 percent or more officers will violate their oaths and not report for duty, Catanzara is encouraging an unlawful strike and work stoppage which carries the potential to undermine public safety and expose our residents to irreparable harm, particularly during an ongoing pandemic,' she added. 

In response, the FOP tweeted: 'President John Catanzara has never engaged in, supported, or encouraged a work stoppage. 

'Lightfoot is the only one who has said she will send our dedicated Officers home without pay if they choose to reject her unlawful orders.'

The FOP tweeted in response to Lightfoot's claim that Catanzara is 'engaging in, supporting, and encouraging a work stoppage or strike' (pictured)

The FOP tweeted in response to Lightfoot's claim that Catanzara is 'engaging in, supporting, and encouraging a work stoppage or strike' (pictured)

Catanzara said to cops in a YouTube video regarding the October 15 deadline: 'You are under no obligation to respond or comply'

Catanzara said to cops in a YouTube video regarding the

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