Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles Declares State of Emergency in County to Protect Health Care Workers’ Rights


Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles — flanked by several state legislators — declared a state of emergency in the county at a press conference on Thursday.

Ogles said the U.S. Constitution entitles health care workers to religious exemptions and other rights of conscience to refuse the COVID-19 vaccine. He also said the U.S. Constitution protects those workers from harassment or even job loss.

The Biden administration now mandates that healthcare workers vaccinate themselves against COVID-19, and Ogles warned his constituents Thursday that more than 1,000 local health care employees in Maury County could lose their jobs.

Tennessee Code Annotated 58-2-110, the Emergency Powers Act, authorizes the political subdivisions in the state, such as counties, to issue states of emergency. The Tennessee General Assembly passed a bill in the recent special session that stripped county public health departments of emergency powers and gave that authority to county mayors, in concert with local boards of health.

On Tuesday, Tennessee Commissioner of Health Dr. Lisa Piercy testified before members of the General Assembly that Tennessee is facing an impending health care crisis due to the lack of health care workers.

Ogles, on Thursday, issued a similar warning.

“The hospital could afford to lose 100 [people], and if we don’t take a stand and protect these workers then I’m in a situation where my hospital will struggle to function at best. I have declared a state of emergency to prevent the health care crisis and to ensure Maury Countians are able to get healthcare and, obviously, to protect the rights of workers and liberty,” Ogles told The Tennessee Star on Thursday.

“How do we do this in such a way that legally it will pass muster? Boom. We did it. So, I have been working for about three weeks with legal counsel to figure out how do we do this in such a way that would protect workers and protect the health care structure of Maury County.”

Biden’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the emergency regulations this month.

State Representative Scott Cepicky (R-Culleoka) also spoke at Thursday’s press conference. He said other Tennessee mayors should also protect their own health care workers, hospitals, and nursing homes.

“A letter went out to all of those medical providers from members of the General Assembly urging them and asking them to honor the CMS guidelines that state that medical exemptions, disability exemptions, and religious exemptions should be honored by those asking to have those. This letter went out today. It will go to all hospitals, all medical providers across the state. A majority of members in the House of Representatives have signed this and members of the Senate also,” Cepicky said.

“So, we look forward to this discussion moving forward. Hopefully we can get back into January when the General Assembly reconvenes, and we can take this issue up and provide further protections for not only those health care workers but all workers and all citizens of Tennessee.”

Ogles, meanwhile, said Biden’s new federal regulations are an “abuse of power” and “unconscionable” and that Tennesseans must not tolerate them.

At Thursday’s press conference, Ogles spoke directly to health care workers.

“What I would encourage you to do is to file your religious exemption. Make them fire you,” Ogles said.

“Do not cave. And then we’ll take it from there.”

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Andy Ogles” by Andy Ogles. 





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6 Thoughts to “Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles Declares State of Emergency in County to Protect Health Care Workers’ Rights”

  1. mikey whipwreck

    doing the job Bill Lee is unwilling to do, apparently.

    Ogles needs to be gov instead. he’s got guts, bill lee does not.

  2. Karen Bracken

    Andy Ogles has proven himself on may occasions to be a true statesman instead of a bought politician. Obviously he has the ability to see a real threat to the citizens of Tennessee and take innovative steps to protect our God given rights. Andy Ogles is the kind of person we need to run against spineless Governor Lee who ,in my opinion, cares more about donations from special interest groups to insure re-election than standing up for the God given rights of the citizens he represents.. That is the difference between Ogles and Lee. One is a statesman that worries about next generation and the other worries about the next election. I wonder how many other Mayors in TN are politicians and how many are statesmen???.

    1. 83ragtop50

      I would vote for Ogles for governor in a heartbeat. Sumner County has a plastic political hack for its mayor. Maybe Ogles would move up here to help us out.

  3. rick

    Beware of Doctors and Lawyers! STAY HEALTHY!!
    “Lets Go Brandon”

  4. David Blackwell RN, BSN, CCM

    I wonder which bugs they are going to release next?

    Better stay healthy folks. Many will be leaving the Rockefeller Medical Grid. The hospitals will be full, but will have little staff to serve your needs.

    After 22 years of Nursing, I am cashing out and going back to waiting tables. I can make more money, and not have to wipe ass.

    Just remember, it is a for profit sick care system. Health actually starts at the gym and the dinner table. Stay healthy, and stay away from Quack Doctors and mad scientist.

    I really wish Bill Gates would perfect Windows before venturing into Viruses. Microsoft Windows has always been prone to virus. Wonder if he deigned it that way to begin with?

    1. John

      David, I sympathize with you and don’t blame you one bit.

      I decided to take a chance on the jab. One month later after my second jab, I got COVID. Maybe the jab helped me fight it off but it most definitely didn’t prevent me from getting it.

      I am fed up with the so-called healthcare system, to where the quality of care you receive depends on how phat your insurance plan is and who you are. There is no hope for the self-employed. Co-op plans aren’t reliable and regular insurance is too expensive for the single payer.