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St. George — Several hundred protesters gathered on Saturday in opposition to the federal vaccine mandate that will require all eligible health care workers to be immunized by Jan. 4.
A crowd of community residents, health care workers and even out-of-town visitors lined up on both sides of River Road in front of St. George Regional Hospital, with some participants driving back and forth along the road in vehicles bearing signs and cheering on their fellow demonstrators.
Michelle Tanner, who was recently elected to the St. George City Council, helped to organize the protest. As a contracted nurse working part time at the hospital, she said she was notified of the impending mandate about a week ago.
"I asked my boss if they would be acknowledging natural immunity, and I was met with the response that 'If you're not vaccinated, we will work on getting your shifts covered,'" Tanner said. "I'm basically being fired for making a personal health decision even though I have natural immunity … from having the disease earlier."
Tanner worked with fellow organizers and hospital nurses Daniel and Lindsey Guercio to contact local groups opposed to mandates and spread word of the protest on social media.