picture of András Csaba Dézsi

Unlike most Hungarian cities, Győr has opted to make vaccination mandatory for employees at city hall and in companies run by the municipality.

The mayor of the town in northwestern Hungary, Dr. András Csaba Dézsi, explained his reasoning in the town’s newspaper, in an interview that he conducted with himself.

It turns out that Győr differs from most municipalities in one important respect: András Csaba Dézsi is still a practicing doctor, and he feels that, “As a doctor, I am convinced that vaccination will be what stops the epidemic and provides protection to people. And as mayor, as an employer, the government has given me the opportunity to put that conviction into practice.”

The government has given Hungarian municipalities the choice to implement vaccine mandates to municipal employees, but it has not been embraced by many of them. Thus far only the municipalities of Budapest’s District XII and District XVI have opted to make vaccination compulsory for workers under their control.

Dézsi also answered his own question about his thoughts on other municipal leaders who have complained that the government was passing on the decision to them.

To this, the mayor wrote, “I am used to having to take responsibility for my decisions, and this decision is, after all, close to my medical background. The legal background for the action was created by the government. Of course, you can run away from making important decisions, you can consider its popularity or unpopularity, you can even choose not to decide, but for me, doing this would have been very hypocritical.”

By now, 85% of Győr’s municipal employees have already recived the vaccine. The rest have 90 days to get their shot, or 60 days for those who regularly meet with clients. Anyone who does not get vaccinated will have to go on unpaid leave, according to the mayor.

“I don’t want to convince anyone. We’re past that at this point,” he wrote.

[Azonnali]

By Steven N.

Steven is the editor-in-chief of Hungarian Politics. He has been following the political scene in Hungary and the Central European region more or less since 1994.