After Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) implemented a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for state employees, including the Washington State Patrol, Arizona’s Department of Public Safety (AZDPS) is taking advantage of what could be an opportunity to hire new staff.
AZDPS is spending ten days in the Pacific Northwest State recruiting new employees to Arizona, which has outlawed mask mandates and does not have a vaccine mandate for state employees.
The government agency advertised its recruiting trip on Twitter.
Hello, Washington!👋 AZDPS recruiters are in WA until 9/19. Visit them at the WA State Fair in Puyallup between now & 9/13, or at the Courtyard Spokane Downtown on 9/11 from 1-5pm. They’ll also have a test date in Olympia on 9/18. Questions? Email Sgt. Wright: [email protected] pic.twitter.com/eQN1iRrNuw
— Dept. of Public Safety (@Arizona_DPS) September 9, 2021
In addition, Washington State Patrol is actively assisting AZDPS’ recruiting efforts. It sent out a tweet informing its followers about where they can meet Arizona’s recruiters, and directed them to the police contact in Arizona who handles job applications.
If you have questions about the Arizona Department of Public Safety, or about the application and hiring process, email Sergeant Kristen Wright at [email protected]
— WA State Patrol (@wastatepatrol) September 8, 2021
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) echoed the message on his Twitter account.
“In Arizona we’re funding the police,” he said.
In Arizona we’re funding the police. https://t.co/PCwjUVhKSj
— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) September 8, 2021
AZDPS reportedly said that it intends to recruit in other states, too, and officially denied that Washington’s vaccine mandate was the reason it chose to recruit there.
“We are not focused on Washington specifically, it’s just our first recruiting trip ahead of other states we intend to visit,” a spokesman for the department reportedly said. “We don’t have a set number of candidates we intend to recruit. We are hoping to fill numerous sworn and professional staff (civilian) positions.”
Washington’s vaccination rules are extremely strict.
All employees who have been directed to take the vaccine via Inslee’s mandate must do so by October 18, or face termination.
Additionally, an email obtained by KTTH appears to show that Washington State Patrol and other “public-facing” employees are not allowed religious exemptions to the vaccine.
“At this time it has been confirmed that for any public-facing position, there are limited accommodations available,” the email reportedly said, adding that “there is no accommodation we can provide for their religious exemption requests.”
The Washington State Patrol and several other groups have sued Inslee over the mandate.
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