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Six Unit 5 employees suing district over COVID-19 vaccine mandate

November 3, 2021
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Published: Nov. 4, 2021 at 2:49 PM CDT
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PEORIA (25 NEWS) - Claiming unfair treatment and violation of their collective bargaining agreement, some Unit 5 employees are suing the district’s school board over its COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

A more-than-150-page document filed with the court in Woodford County is led by six Unit 5 employees, two of whom - according to the report - have kids learning there.

They are challenging the executive order issued by Governor JB Pritzker back in early September, which required all school staff to get the COVID-19 vaccine or submit to weekly testing.

Those who didn’t comply would face consequences, including docked pay.

In the suit, the six plaintiffs claim they have been “forced to undergo testing against their will” in order to stay employed, and one of them is being “locked out of work” because they refuse to comply.

They are claiming discrimination and believe only local health departments can make those kinds of requirements.

Right now, the six employees are asking the court to stop the district from requiring anyone to wear a mask, vaccinate or test, plus, allow employees to return to work regardless of their vaccination status.

25 News reached out to the lawyer in charge of the case, but didn’t receive a response.

In a statement, Unit 5 says it is complying with Governor Pritzker’s executive order and the State Board of Education’s emergency rules.

Court is set to kick off Thursday at 1:00 p.m. in Woodford County, in front of Circuit Judge Charles Feeney.

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