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Is Florida giving a $5000 stimulus check to police officers?

The Florida legislature is considering a bill that would provide $5,000 to police in other states looking to avoid vaccine mandates. Could it pass?

The Florida legislature is considering a bill that would provide $5,000 to police in other states looking to avoid vaccine mandates. Could it pass?

Earlier this year, Florida approved a bill that sent $1,000 thank you bonuses to teachers and administrators across the state. Govenor Ron DeSantis announced that the state would begin a program that would provide a $5,000 check to police who looking to relocate to Florida, targeting primarily those who are trying to evade vaccine requirements. 

In an interview with Fox News, Governor Ron DeSantis said his state is currently “actively working to recruit out-of-state law enforcement.” DeSantis spoke directly to police in other states where vaccine mandates have been implemented saying: “NYPD, Minneapolis, Seattle if you’re not being treated well, we will treat you better here. You can fill important needs for us, and we will compensate you as a result.”

Interested in a possible 2024 presidential run, DeSantis has taken aim at the administration, and Democrats for the implementation of vaccine mandates, a common conservative talking point. During the interview, he also said that there was a "scientific basis" for his claim that most first responders have contracted covid-19 and believe their natural immunity will protect them. However, recent peer-reviewed studies show that the protection provided by vaccines a greater level of protection, and can extend the period one is protected from the virus.

The impacts of covid-19 on policing in the United States

During a recent White House press conference in October, Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked why the administration is in favor of vaccine mandates for law enforcement in military officials. 

The reporter argued that many police officers and military officials are saying they will walk off the job if forced to get the vaccine. Psaki responded by asking the reporter if he knew the leading cause of death among police overs in 2020. The answer: covid-19. Psaki argues that this fact highlights the continued risk covid-19 poses to police and other first responders as well as the public they interact with.

As of 7 October, more than ninety-two percent of active-duty military officials had been received at least one dose of a vaccine. Many cities, including those named by Gov. DeSantis, have reported high vaccination rates. In Seatle, ninety-two percent of police were fully vaccinated, and in New York City the rate has reached seventy-four percent. While not as high as Seatle it has increased since the mandate went into effect.