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FLEOA Asks Ohio Governor about COVID Vaccine

Governor Mike DeWine

State of Ohio Riffe Center, 30th Floor, 77

South High StreetColumbus, OH 43215-6117

Dear Governor DeWine,

I am writing on behalf of the 29,000 members of the Federal Law EnforcementOfficers Association (www.fleoa.org) whose members have been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic since the beginning. Federal law enforcement officers have been deployed throughout our nation and the world during this pandemic, including in Ohio. We have also been a stakeholder with the planning and briefings on the COVID-19 pandemic response with the White House, Center for Disease Control(CDC) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and rollout of the COVID vaccine.

As you know, our nation’s COVID-19 vaccination program was prioritized based upon risk. The CDC issued its vaccination guidelines under which state and local health officials were supposed to follow during the administration of the vaccine.Under this guidance vaccinations for first responders (including law enforcement officers – federal, state and local) was supposed to be available during Phase 1.

Understandably, Ohio initially chose to vaccinate medical personnel including EMS responders under the Phase 1A program in the state. Law Enforcement Officers were led to believe that they would be eligible to receive the vaccine during Ohio’s Phase1B, yet the recent release of the phased plan rollout does not include law enforcement officers.

This is concerning since all law enforcement officers in our nation have and continue to be on the frontlines during this pandemic. They will continue to willingly place themselves in harm’s way and have suffered an inordinate illness and death rate due to the pandemic. It is imperative that under your vaccination plan, they be prioritized to receive the vaccine. If it is a supply issue and Ohio is lacking the necessary vaccination doses, we are available to help support advocacy to ensure enough doses are available to law enforcement officers.

We understand that this pandemic has led officials, included our nation’s Governors to make many difficult decisions and choices but the need to ensure law enforcement officers are able to receive the vaccine couldn’t be more pressing. FLEOA appreciates your efforts on behalf of law enforcement and is available to assist you with ensuring our nation’s protectors are protected. Feel free to contact us at fleoa@fleoa.org.

Respectfully, 

Larry Cosme

National President