Santiago Vazquez Calls for Gregory Tony to Resign
In times of need and uncertainty, the true nature of a leader is revealed. Unfortunately for Broward County, the mounting pressures of the COVID-19 crisis are exposing the lack of qualifications of the unelected Interim Sheriff Gregory Tony. In fact, Tony’s response to the crisis has been so marred by failure and lack of leadership that it has been called out in an official statement by Jeff Bell, the president of the Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputies Association.
I am personally appalled by Interim Sheriff Tony’s behavior as alleged in the letter and feel that in light of this revelation he should submit his resignation.
The statement, released on April 4th, mourns the life of 39-year-old Broward Sheriff’s deputy Shannon Bennett, the first deputy in Broward to die from a Coronavirus infection. In the statement, Jeff Bell states that Tony had previously ignored written offers by the President of the Association including a donation of 1,400 N95 masks to protect the health of his deputies on the front line.
Once again, we see how Tony had never been part of the Broward Sheriff’s Office family and thus knows very little about how the crisis impacts our first responders who are working every day on the streets. Every BSO leader knows that when someone offers you the tools needed to defend those serving under you, you put politics aside and accept those tools.
According to the Association, the offers to assist were made on March 16th and again on March 23rd. Appallingly, each offer was met by complete silence from the office of Interim Sheriff Gregory Tony. The Association’s statement notes that, instead of doing his job, Tony has chosen to post vain, self-serving Instagram posts of himself working out.
“The Union will continue to be vocal against our [unelected Interim] Sheriff,” stated Bell, “who seems to think that posting Instagram videos of himself working out, photo ops and censoring critics on social media by deleting their comments is more important than protecting his employees. The Union is concerned for the safety of the membership and other employees under the leadership, or lack of leadership, of Gregory Tony. #UNQUALIFIEDSHERIFF”.
Once again, we see how Tony had never been part of the Broward Sheriff’s Office family and thus knows very little about how the crisis impacts our first responders who are working every day on the streets.
This would not be the first time that Interim Sheriff Gregory Tony has committed an unconscionable failure. He already failed time and time again to protect those for whom he has a basic duty of care. Now, by all measures, Tony has hit a new low. Broward deserves better than this as we navigate a time of unprecedented crisis.
It’s time for the unelected Interim Sheriff Gregory Tony to resign, suspend his political campaign and allow the people of Broward to elect a Sheriff with a record of excellence.