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BOSTON (LifeSiteNews) – Municipal employees in Boston will not be required to take COVID-19 vaccines for the time being, Massachusetts Appeals Court Justice Sabita Singh ruled Tuesday.

Just the News reported that the Boston Police Superior Officer Federation, Boston Police Detectives Benevolent Society, and Boston Firefighters Union Local 718 sued the city over Democratic Mayor Michelle Wu’s mandate that all 19,000 city employees be vaccinated for COVID by January 15. The unions argue that the mandate violates their collective bargaining agreement with the city.

Singh found their case had sufficient merit to issue a temporary restraining order against enforcement of the mandate, meaning municipal workers can now choose routine COVID testing as an alternative without fear of being fired for refusing the shots.

Another city employee group, Boston First Responders United, issued a statement thanking the plaintiffs for “representing their respective members by showing a willingness to engage in litigation to preserve workers rights.”

Many Americans continue to harbor serious reservations as to the COVID vaccines’ safety, stemming in large part from the rushed nature of their creation. The Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed initiative developed and released the shots in a tenth of the time vaccine development usually takes and a quarter of the time it took the previous record-holder, the mumps vaccine, yet their advocates have done little to address the concerns of the hesitant.

During a COVID-19 vaccine hearing held by Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin last month, attorney Thomas Renz presented medical billing data from the Pentagon’s Defense Medical Epidemiology Database (DMED) showing 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%).

In a statement to left-wing “fact-checking” outlet PolitiFact, Defense Health Agency’s Armed Forces Surveillance Division spokesperson Peter Graves confirmed the existence of the records but claimed that a conveniently-timed “data corruption” glitch made the pre-2021 numbers appear far lower than the actual numbers of cases for those years, which PolitiFact took at face value.

Meanwhile, data indicates that widespread dissemination of the COVID vaccines has failed to end the pandemic. The federal government considers more than 214 million Americans (over 64% of the eligible) to be “fully vaccinated” (a moving target given the vaccines’ temporary nature), yet data from Johns Hopkins University reported last October shows that more Americans died of COVID-19 by that point in 2021 (353,000) than in all of 2020 (352,000). The Moderna vaccine has been available throughout all of 2021; the Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson shots were made available in late February.

Mayor Wu represents a contrast from her predecessor, Mayor Kim Janey, who despite being a Democrat said last year that COVID vaccine passports were reminiscent of America’s history “of people needing to show their papers” in the context of slavery and segregation.