A Los Angeles Fire Department captain from Station 108 on Mulholland Drive could be in hot water after he posted a video criticizing city officials, the department and its union, United Firefighters of Los Angeles City.
In the video, Capt. Christian Granucci sounded off about the Los Angeles City Council’s unanimous vote on Aug. 18 that requires city employees to be vaccinated by October. He referred to the move as “tyrannical.”
“I’m more than likely going to catch total grief from my administration for this, but I am done being silent on this matter and so are many of our members,” Granucci said.
He was correct, as the fire department released a statement on Tuesday that stated Granucci’s video has been submitted to the department’s Professional Standards Division for investigation and that the captain could be subject to disciplinary review.
“While we respect the individual’s right to his opinion, he is not authorized to speak on behalf of the department,” the statement read. “The individual is in uniform and appears to be on duty, thereby giving the impression that he is speaking in an official capacity.”
In the video, Granucci, a self-proclaimed 31-year veteran of the fire department, referenced Honolulu Fire Department Capt. Kaimi Pelekai, who also had to choose between keeping his job or declining the vaccine.
“We saw this tyranny coming,” Granucci said. “We saw it coming across the Pacific. …We watched a passionate plea from Capt. Pelekai – literally in tears being forced to resign because he chose not to take the vaccine, forced to leave the department after faithfully serving it for years. And it landed on our coast. It hit San Francisco. It hit San Francisco Fire, and we heard the stories up there. Our union representatives stood by idly and played a wait and see, sat on their hands. Well, now it’s here in Los Angeles.”
Firefighters who refuse a vaccine will be subjected to testing twice a week, and they will be terminated if they refuse, Granucci said,
“I have literally bled for this department,” he added. “I use to love coming to work. I respected the administration of this department at one point. I even respected our union leadership, and now they are lock-step with total tyranny.”
Granucci said the vaccination mandate has split the department in half, which is “what tyrants want.”
“They want to split down the middle; they want to divide and conquer,” he said. “I am so hopping mad right now. You have no idea. My head could pop.”
Opponents of the mandate have hired an attorney, Granucci said, and “he is a shark.” He said the attorney will “take the fight to you, the city of Los Angeles.”
“I don’t want to be doing this at the end of my career,” he continued. “I’d love to just do a few more years on this department and just fade off into the sunset but you know what, damn it, this landed in our lap and we gotta do something. We can’t sit back and let this happen, let this happen to our country. … God bless all the first responders out there. You need to turn around and put your union on check and have them fight for you. And if they don’t, you take the battle to them any way you can, and you assemble all the numbers that you can, as many people as you can, and you take the fight to them. We outnumber them. I’m out.”
According to the fire department, the city’s vaccine mandate for employees still requires the mayor’s signature for approval.
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