Mayor de Blasio Mandates Choice of Vaccination or Weekly Testing and Masks for All City Workers
By Yehudit Garmaise
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced today that all city workers must begin to get vaccinated, after the city’s healthcare workers who work in public hospitals begin to do on on Aug. 2.
On Aug. 16, city workers who work in publically run residential or congegrate care facilities, such as nursing homes, will be required to provide proof of vaccination or submit to masks and weekly testing, or they will "be removed from the workplace," said Renee Campion, the commissioner of New York City office labor relations.
The mayor announced a new app: NYC COVID Safe, which will provide proof of vaccination, in addition to paper vaccination cards.
The vaccination mandate for employees at other city agencies, such as the NYPD, the FDNY, the Department of Education, and the Buildings Department will begin on Sept. 13, which is the first day of public school.
The announcement comes a day after Kristen Choi, an assistant professor at the UCLA School of Nursing said that 99% of the patients who are hospitalized with the Delta variant are unvaccinated.
In addition, Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH, the director for the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that COVID’s Delta variant is “spreading with incredible efficiency, and now represents more than 83% of the virus circulating in the United States.”
Mayor de Blasio’s mandate, which will be phased in slowly, for New York City works to get vaccinated is expected to start with city employees who work in congregate settings.
The city’s entire workforce is expected to be completely vaccinated by mid-September.
The mayor also implored private businesses to follow the example of the city and similarly mandate vaccination or weekly COVID testing and masks to stop the spread of the virulent Delta variant.
“We were in the epicenter of COVID, and we are not going back to where we were,” the mayor said last week.
"New Yorkers should be running, not walking, to get vaccinated," said Dave A. Chokshi, MD, the city's health commissioner, last week.
Credit: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office.