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CHICAGO (LifeSiteNews) — A labor relations judge has ruled that Chicago city employees fired for refusing to submit to COVID-19 vaccination should be reinstated with back pay.

WGN reports that a judge with the Illinois Labor Relations Board ruled that in finalizing and implementing the city’s vaccine mandate, outgoing Democrat Mayor Lori Lightfoot failed to bargain in good faith with public-sector unions, including AFCSME Council 31 and the Coalition of Unionized Public Employees. As a result, it must rehire any employee fired for noncompliance and reimburse their lost pay and benefits with 7% interest.

The city has 30 days to file an appeal before the ruling becomes final. A spokesman for Lightfoot indicated her office is considering doing so and called the ruling an “erroneous decision that does not follow the law, facts or importantly the science.” However, complicating the matter is the impending replacement of Lightfoot with Mayor-elect Brandon Johnson on May 15. Johnson has so far not commented on what his administration will do with the ruling.

“It’s a pretty resounding win,” said Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7 President John Catanzara, whose group has a separate case pending before the board. “Where does that leave our case? There’s no reason to even have it because they’re all the same issues.”

May Americans continue to harbor concerns about the COVID-19 vaccines, which were developed and released under former President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed initiative in a fraction of the time vaccines usually take.

The federal Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting system (VAERS) reports 35,152 deaths, 197,564 hospitalizations, 19,235 heart attacks, and 26,823 myocarditis and pericarditis cases as of April 14. An April 2022 study out of Israel indicates that COVID infection itself cannot fully account for the myocarditis numbers, despite common insistence to the contrary. Jab defenders are quick to stress that reports submitted to VAERS are unconfirmed, as anyone can submit one, but U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) researchers have recognized a “high verification rate of reports of myocarditis to VAERS after mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccination,” leading to the conclusion that “under-reporting is more likely” than over-reporting.

Further, VAERS is not the only data source containing red flags. Data from the U.S. Pentagon’s Defense Medical Epidemiology Database (DMED) shows that 2021 saw drastic spikes in a variety of diagnoses for serious medical issues over the previous five-year average, including hypertension (2,181%), neurological disorders (1,048%), multiple sclerosis (680%), Guillain-Barre syndrome (551%), breast cancer, (487%), female infertility (472%), pulmonary embolism (468%), migraines (452%), ovarian dysfunction (437%), testicular cancer (369%), and tachycardia (302%).

Last September, the Japanese Society for Vaccinology published a peer-reviewed study conducted by researchers from Stanford, UCLA, and the University of Maryland, which found that the “Pfizer trial exhibited a 36% higher risk of serious adverse events in the vaccine group” while the “Moderna trial exhibited a 6% higher risk of serious adverse events in the vaccine group,” for a combined “16% higher risk of serious adverse events in mRNA vaccine recipients.”

In December 2022, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) hosted a roundtable discussion during which civil rights attorney Aaron Siri detailed data from the CDC’s V-Safe reporting system revealing that 800,000 of the system’s 10 million participants, or approximately 7.7 percent, reported needing medical care after COVID injection. “25 percent of those people needed emergency care or were hospitalized, and another 48 percent sought urgent care,” Siri added. “Also, another 25 percent on top of the 7.7 percent reported being unable to work or go to school.”

Another study by a team of American, British, and Canadian researchers, published last December by the in the Journal of Medical Ethics, found that COVID booster mandates for university students – a relatively healthy group at relatively low risk from the virus – do far more harm than good: “per COVID-19 hospitalisation prevented, we anticipate at least 18.5 serious adverse events from mRNA vaccines, including 1.5–4.6 booster-associated myopericarditis cases in males (typically requiring hospitalisation).”