The Seattle Fire Department had more than ten units, comprising fire engines, medic units, and other emergency response teams, unavailable this weekend as a result of decreased staffing levels due to the firings over vaccine mandates and now the department struggles to effectively serve the community.
"There will be at least one person that will die from this," a source within Seattle Fire told The Post Millennial.
Seattle Fire has struggled to keep optimum staffing levels since before the mandate firings and now the city is set to suffer even greater consequences.
On Sunday, the city had ten emergency response units out of service and was unable to respond to emergencies. Out of the few available units left, a couple were pulled from their assigned units to staff the Seahawks game. Nearly the same amount of units were out of service on Saturday too, according to sources.
Last Wednesday, Chief Scoggins sent an email to the department urging firefighters to put in overtime hours after they were down nine units on Saturday, October 23.
"I would like to start this update by thanking each of you for your continued service to the department and support for each other. Over the past week, we have been able to completely staff (220 positions) our operations units, with the exception of Saturday," Chief Scoggins said in an email obtained by The Post Millennial.
"I want to encourage you to sign up for any overtime shifts you can work. We know weekend shifts are harder to fill, and with many special events happening and the holidays nearing, we will need your help even more," Scoggins continued. "As some of our colleagues are in the process of leaving, it is important we acknowledge their service to the community and thank them."
Sources within Seattle Fire told The Post Millennial that the majority of firefighters are already working maximum hours and adding on excessive overtime won't be sustainable.
"The city has hired 58 firefighters at the different ranks to fill positions in operations. With that, we are still short. Can you imagine if those 58 firefighters had not signed up to work overtime? This is not sustainable. Firefighters will eventually get burned out and not want to sign up," a Seattle firefighter said.
Democratic-run states throughout the country are experiencing similar shortages of first responders due to both mandates and demonization–as a result of the "Defund The Police" movement.
There were 26 firestations out of service in New York City on Saturday as a result of the COVID vaccine mandate, which goes into effect on Monday. Thousands of first responders from across NYC have been out protesting before the deadline and were backed by elected officials that called the mandates "unconscionable."
"If someone dies due to a slower emergency response, it's on Bill de Blasio and his overreaching mandates. I hope this fool fixes it ASAP!" Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis said on Twitter. Malliotakis is a Republican representing part of Brooklyn and Staten Island in the US House of Representatives.
According to New York Post, Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro said members of the fire department are calling out sick in protest of the mandates and they "did not close any firestations."
"Irresponsible bogus sick leave by some of our members is creating a danger for New Yorkers and their fellow Firefighters," Nigro said. "They need to return to work or risk the consequences of their actions."
While mandates continue to go into effect in Democratic states throughout the country, Republican governors like Florida's Ron DeSantis are recruiting first responders that don't wish to comply with mandates to their states.
"If you're not being treated well, we'll treat you better here," Governor DeSantis said in an interview with FOX News' Maria Bartiromo.
"In Florida, not only are we going to want to protect the law enforcement and all the jobs, we're actually actively working to recruit out-of-state law enforcement because we do have needs in our police and our sheriff's departments," DeSantis said during the interview.
"So in the next legislative session, I'm going to hopefully sign legislation that gives a $5,000 bonus to any out-of-state law enforcement that relocates in Florida."
The mandates going into effect in Democratic cities, like Seattle and New York City, are among the strictest in the nation. The vaccine is a requirement as a condition of employment and there is no option to submit negative test results in place of the vaccine. Both cities also require vaccine passports to enter restaurants, bars, gyms, and other entertainment venues.
The article was updated to reflect an additional comment from Seattle Fire to note that these are "units," not simply fire engines.
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