Chicago withdraws lawsuit against police union

Attorneys representing the city of Chicago dismissed a lawsuit against a rank-and-file police officers’ union on Friday after the labor group's president, John Catanzara, encouraged officers to defy the city's vaccine mandate. 

Chicago Mayor Lori LightfootLori LightfootChicago students protest for virtual learning, COVID-19 stipends School infrastructure is a children's human rights issue — it's time the US acknowledges that The Hill's Morning Report - Biden champions filibuster reform, but doesn't have the votes MORE (D) announced that she directed the city’s Department of Law to voluntarily dismiss the suit against the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) Lodge 7 because more officers submitted their vaccination status. 

“The past few weeks have shown what I have said from the beginning to be true: that our brave police officers are smarter than their FOP leadership, and care more about their city, their fellow Chicagoans, and upholding their sworn oath to protect and serve, than they do Catanzara’s frivolous demands to stop working,” Lightfoot said in a statement.

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"It should be noted, that should the FOP or John Catanzara take any further action toward encouraging an illegal work stoppage or strike, we can and will immediately refile this action," her statement added.

More than 87 percent of the police department had reported their status as of Monday, and 76 percent were fully vaccinated, according to The Chicago Sun-Times

Catanzara had been vocally opposed to Lightfoot requirement that all city employees submit their vaccination status in October. After he discouraged officers from complying with the mandate, Lightfoot filed a complaint arguing that the move constituted an unlawful strike

Last month, a judge decided to keep the reporting requirement in place but said Chicago could not retain its mandate that required officers to get the vaccine by Dec. 31.

The Hill has reached out to Catanzara for comment.