Firefighters are among the professions that will have to be vaccinated against Covid-19 before September 15, under threat of sanctions. The Gard and Hérault firefighters’ unions are mobilizing.
The Gard and Hérault firefighters see it as a ” violation of individual freedoms “. In the bill concerning the new restrictive measures to stop the coronavirus epidemic, vaccination will be compulsory for certain professions, such as caregivers and firefighters from September 15.
While this bill must be presented this Wednesday, July 21 to the National Assembly, the firefighters are mobilizing.
Seven firefighters’ unions are asking for the withdrawal, for their profession, of the obligation of vaccination against Covid-19 in a press release sent to Parliamentarians on Monday, July 19, including firefighters from Hérault and Gard: “It is a letter against the obligation of vaccination. It is addressed to deputies and senators to alert them to the fact not to oblige the firefighters to be vaccinated. We want them to let us decide, ” explains Nicolas Nadal, southern departmental secretary of the Gard firefighters.
“We are not against vaccination, we organize vaccinodromes and many firefighters are vaccinated. But we want everyone to be able to make their decision as they wish, ” adds the firefighter.
If these firefighters are not vaccinated by September 15, 2021, they will no longer be able to exercise their profession: “What bothers us is the obligation with in addition the policy of the stick. Instead of showing pedagogy, information and explaining things, there we have sanctions, we are forced and there is also at risk of dismissal, ” says Gilles Arnaud, firefighter in the Hérault.
Ensuring the continuity of public service … with unvaccinated volunteers
Today, these firefighters are all the more worried, as the interest of their profession is called into question: “I believe that today we must be careful not to stigmatize unvaccinated people. The firefighters are essentially volunteers in France, and if ever this unvaccinated staff could no longer exercise and leave on the interventions, I do not know how we could ensure the continuity of the public service. We are in a region which is very exposed to forest fires in the summer and at this time of the year if we had to eliminate all unvaccinated firefighters, I do not know who could provide the interventions,“concludes Nicolas Nadal.