On Saturday night, a video began circulating across social media of a Washingon state trooper issuing his final sign-off after he refused to comply with Washington Gov. Jay Inslee's vaccine mandate for state workers that takes effect on Oct. 18.
The trooper radioed the operator after his shift, announcing his resignation after 22 years on the force. "This is my final sign-off. After 22 years of serving the citizens of the state of Washington, I am being asked to leave because I am dirty. Numerous fatalities, injuries. I've worked sick; I've played sick; buried lots of friends over these years. [I'd] like to thank you guys; I'd like to thank the citizens of Yakima County as well as my fellow officers within the valley. Without you guys I wouldn’t have been very successful; you kept me safe and got me home to my family every night. Thank you for that," said the trooper.
"Wish I could say more but this is it, so, state 1034, this is the last time you’ll hear me in a state patrol car," he concluded. "And Jay Inslee can kiss my ass."
The radio operator responded, applauding the officer for his work with the force: "State 1034, thank you for your 22 years of service to the citizens of Washington state. You've taken on many roles in your time with the patrol. In your first year, you delivered a baby while on patrol … You've been a theory instructor … peer support member, part of the chaplaincy board … You've been a great role model and a mentor for all the young troopers serving in the area by sharing your knowledge and experience throughout the years. Thank you for your service."
On Aug. 20, Inslee announced that all state workers, including state troopers, would have to be vaccinated by Oct. 18, or face termination. The order prohibits "Any Worker from engaging in work for a State Agency after October 18, 2021 if the Worker has not been fully vaccinated against COVID-19."
After the governor announced mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations as a condition of employment for state employees and healthcare workers, the mandate garnered intense pushback and resulted in mass protests throughout the state.
Thousands of residents rallied on the steps of the Washington state Capitol to protest the mandate. Firefighters, law enforcement officers, corrections officers, healthcare workers, and members of the community were in attendance, standing in opposition to government overreach. The crowd sang the National Anthem and chanted phrases such as "Freedom,"We Will Not Comply," and "Recall Inslee."
In addition to the state's draconian vaccine policy, Inslee has previously come under fire for reportedly sending COVID-19 patients into state-run nursing homes to "create capacity for hospitals" during the initial outbreak.