AUSTIN, Texas — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is encouraging veterans to gather at the Texas State Capitol after this year's Veteran's Day parade in Austin was cancelled.
Abbott's protest comes after the Austin Veterans Parade Foundation stated in a post that the city of Austin Public Health Department's COVID-19 restrictions forced them to cancel their events.
"Due to Covid restrictions from the Austin Public Health Department, this year's Veterans Day Parade will not take place in Austin," says a post from the organizers. "The restrictions required the Austin Veteran Parade Foundation to verify all participants and spectators to have either a current negative Covid test or be vaccinated. This is something that we could not do as we anticipated some 30,000 attendees to the parade.
They hope to bring back the parade next year.
"We are hopeful that in 2022, the restrictions on public gatherings will be back to normal," says a post from the organizers. "In lue (sic) of the parade, we are working with the City of Austin and the Austin Veterans Commission to dedicate the Veterans Park on Nov. 11th."
Abbott issued a response Tuesday, two days ahead of when the parade would have occurred.
"The City of Austin's overreaching COVID-19 requirements have placed an undue burden on large events like the 2021 Veterans Day Parade, forcing the Austin Veterans Parade Foundation to cancel their annual event," he stated in a news release.
Abbott invited the Austin Veterans Parade Foundation and military veterans to rally on the south steps of the capitol in support of military veterans on Veteran's Day.
Austin Public Health says the community is currently in Stage 3 of COVID-19 guidelines, which say that partially vaccinated and unvaccinated people should take precautions in private indoor and outdoor gatherings and activities while partially vaccinated or unvaccinated individuals should avoid these situations completely, unless essential.
The Travis County COVID-19 statistics can be found here.