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Fresno Mayor Dyer Announces Weekly COVID Tests For Unvaccinated City Employees

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Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer announces weekly COVID-19 tests for unvaccinated city employees beginning September 7th, 2021 during a press conference at Fresno City Hall.

With COVID-19 hospitalization rates on the rise, Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer announced Wednesday that all unvaccinated city employees will soon be required to take weekly COVID tests. 

During a press conference at City Hall the Mayor said at least 36 percent of the over 4,000 city employees have received the COVID-19 vaccine. He said he and city council members are hoping to inspire other employees to follow suit.  

"We want to make sure that we are incentivizing people to get the vaccine, because we know that is the goal, which is going to ultimately lead us to reduce hospital rates,” he said.

Currently 70 employees are in quarantine due to exposure or illness. Dyer said that’s reason enough to require testing or proof of vaccination. 

“We're not going to accept, at this point, any type of self attestation. We are going to require and have been requiring our employees to show their vaccination card,” he said. 

Dyer said the city will not yet require people to get the vaccine but hopes to have weekly tests running by September 7. Councilmember Garry Bredefield opposed the new mandate. He said forcing employees to get tested weekly is harassment. 

Madi Bolanos covered immigration and underserved communities for KVPR from 2020-2022. Before joining the station, she interned for POLITCO in Washington D.C. where she reported on US trade and agriculture as well as indigenous women’s issues during the Canadian election. She earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism with a minor in anthropology from San Francisco State University. Madi spent a semester studying at the Danish Media and Journalism School where she covered EU policies in Brussels and alleged police brutality at the Croatian-Serbian border.