KELSO, Wash. (KOIN) — By a 6-1 vote, the Kelso City Council voted to pass a resolution they say shows support for people who don’t want to get a vaccine, including state employees, teachers, healthcare workers and first responders.
Deputy Mayor Kimberly Lefebvre — who said at the meeting she’s recovering from COVID-19 and is not infectious — said the resolution is not a legal code or rule.
It has no legal meaning. Council members said it’s a gesture of support for people who don’t want to be required to wear masks in public or get vaccinated.
“We’re just taking a position on it that says we stand behind you, we’re not making a law of no masks or no vaccine, we’re not going to your employers and telling them that they can’t fire you if you don’t get the vaccine,” Mayor Nancy Malone said.
Council member Lisa Alexander proposed the resolution.
“We are elected by the people and we need to listen to the people who put us in these seats,” Alexander said. “A mandate is not a law, it is a strong suggestion. There has been no special session. Our governor will not have one to even contemplate these mandates being made into laws.”
The resolution was titled, “The City of Kelso City Council expressing support for our healthcare workers, first responders, teachers and citizens’ individual rights.”
“We also express our support for Kelso and Washington state residents who make the personal choice not to follow the state’s potentially unconstitutional and potentially illegal mandates and who choose to maintain bodily autonomy and decide for themselves what does or does not get injected into their or their children’s bodies,” the resolution states.
After 4 Kelso City Council members walked out of the last meeting in a protest over indoor mask mandates, the entire council met at Tam O’Shanter Park to discuss an anti-vaccine resolution aimed at Gov. Jay Inslee’s mandates.
When it was time for public testimony about a half-dozen people spoke in favor of the resolution.
“I just want to say I think it’s very, very important to stick up for our freedom,” one said.
The council member who voted no said he believed the resolution is a waste of time since it does not change a law or rule.