DENVER, Colo, (WTVO) – A Denver Sheriff’s Department deputy quit on Thursday after nine years on the job, saying that the vaccine mandate “was the last straw.”
Craig Greeno, who guarded inmates at the Denver Health Medical Center, was reportedly upset at having to leave his $90,000 a year job, but stated that “I do not like to be told I don’t have a choice. It’s a personal decision,” according to CBS4.
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock announced that all city employees had to be vaccinated by the end on September, or they would face possible determination. As of September 17, 87% of city employees have been vaccinated, with only 70.1% of deputies with the Sheriff’s Department having received the vaccine.
Greeno said that other issues from work had been bothering him, such as mandatory overtime that was keeping him away from his family, but he said that vaccine mandate “put [him] over the edge.”
The former deputy said that he was not the only officer that was upset and wanted to leave due to the new mandate, but that other deputies could not afford to quit.
“A lot of people, I know, are like me,” Greeno said. “They did not want to be forced to do it.”
Greeno said that he is going to take some time before looking for a new job, and that he dos not plan on getting the vaccine.
“I do not know what’s going to happen,” Greeno said. “I do not plan on getting it, I do not know what it is going to do to me.”
Greeno said that his mother and father got vaccinate against COVID-19, but that his mother had to be hospitalized after suffering a kidney infection. In addition, he said that one of his children got sick after receiving any vaccine when they were an infant.
Mary Dulacki, Denver’s Deputy Director of Safety, said that her agency is preparing for a possible wave of resignations and firings in law enforcement due to the mandate. Contingency staffing plans are reportedly being put together for after the September 30 deadline, in law enforcement agencies that are already short-staffed.
Though currently without a job, Greeno has no regrets about his decision, saying that his pay was “really good, but money is not everything.”