(TPM) – The Special Olympics is lifting its vaccine requirement for delegation members attending the 2022 games in Orlando.

The organization made the announcement on its website Thursday.

In a press conference Friday, Governor Ron DeSantis applauded the move.

“Your rights or your freedoms should not be circumscribed by your decision to take or not take a COVID vaccine,” DeSantis said.

Florida’s Surgeon General Joseph A. Ladapo tweeted, “After being initially disqualified due to their COVID-19 vaccination status, I’m happy to announce that 70 athletes have already been reintegrated with their 500 teammates of the Florida delegation.”

Earlier this year, the Special Olympics asked 5,500 participants to provide proof of vaccination to participate in the games.

DeSantis threatened the Special Olympics with $27.5 million dollars in fines if they didn’t lift the vaccine restriction, Yahoo News reported. Florida state law prohibits businesses, including charities, from requiring proof of vaccination. The fine for a company is $5,000 per person.

The Florida Department of Health sent a letter about the law to the Special Olympics on May 27. By asking 5,500 participants to show proof of vaccination, the Olympics would accrue fines per person multiplied by 5,000, for a total of $27.5 million dollars. The fines would be enforced, unless the Special Olympics lifted the vaccine mandate, the department said.

In a statement Friday, the Special Olympics said, “delegates who were registered for the Games but were unable to participate due to the prior vaccine requirement, now have the option to attend.”

Florida’s ban on proof of vaccination is a continuation of successful COVID policy that’s led to consistently low coronavirus cases per capita. The state’s COVID success has included efforts to keep commerce and businesses open — measures which have attracted vacationers like NYC congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

DeSantis’s approach to the Special Olympics also reflects his more aggressive policy with activist corporations. In April, the Florida governor took on Disney after several videos emerged showing the company’s deliberate attempts to indoctrinate children with woke gender ideology.

Over 4,000 athletes are set to compete in the games, which begin June 12.

thepostmillennial.com/special-olympics-lifts-vaccine-mandate-for-upcoming-games-in-florida