New York to order all city employees to get Covid vaccine

Municipal workers in NYC will be the latest in the US to meet Covid vaccination requirements

Gino Spocchia
Wednesday 20 October 2021 14:35
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New York City mayor Bill de Blasio is expected to announce an order mandating all city employees are vaccinated against Covid before the end of October.

Mr de Blasio is due to announce the mandate on Wednesday, according to the Wall Street Journal, in what is the latest order for municipal workers across the US to get vaccinated.

It will mean all 46,000 New York City employees who are currently unvaccinated would have until 29 October to get a shot, or be unemployed.

Corrections employees will have until 1 December to meet the mandate, reports suggested, as the city is struggling to fully staff its Rikers Island prison facility.

So far, roughly 71 per cent of the city’s workforce, or 160,500 workers, have received at least a single shot.

That includes 70 per cent of police and 60 per cent of New York City’s fire department, according to figures seen by the WSJ. Both departments, as well as corrections, are those with the lowest rates of vaccinations.

New York City Police Department (NYPD) commissioner Dermot Shea said in an interview with NY1 News on Tuesday night that he supported calls for officers to be vaccinated.

“We lost three members last week, two of them to Covid, and I think it’s all unnecessary, to some degree,” Mr Shea said.

Educators and healthcare workers had already been asked to meet a vaccination requirement, and around 96 per cent of the city’s 167,000 school system employees are vaccinated.

Earlier reports suggested that Mr de Blasio had been considering widening the vaccine mandate to all 300,000 city workers before Wednesday’s announcement.

“City workers have been a daily inspiration,” Mr de Blasio reportedly said in a statement. “Now is the time for them to show their city the path out of this pandemic once and for all.”

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