United States

NYC vaccine mandate comes into force, thousand workers should stay home

14:59, 01 November 2021
NYC vaccine mandate comes into force, thousand workers should stay home

At least 24,000 NYC workers will have to stay at home after Mayor de Blasio’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate comes into force.

The mandate fueled the protest across the city while many city workers have marched in the streets to decry the new COVID-19 restrictions policy.

According to the law, all workers including the firefighters, police officers, and others had to prove they were vaccinated of at least one dose until 5 pm Friday, otherwise, those who didn’t would be placed on unpaid leave for a period of a minimum of 30 days. 

It means that more than 8,000 policemen, 3,700 firefighters, and approximately 2,000 sanitation workers didn’t come to work on Monday.

However, the unvaccinated employees will be allowed to work, if they applied for medical or religious exemptions which will be checked by the New York Equal Employment Opportunity Division.

On November 1 the Mayor urged all city workers without the exemptions until 9 a.m. Monday to get at least one COVID-19 jab or get furloughed. 

On Saturday 26 the fire stations in the five boroughs were closed due to the staff shortages with at least 20 still out of action Sunday. In addition, over 700 policemen on non-patrol assignments were sent to work on city streets to fill in the gaps.

The New York Council member D. Levine claimed: "The firehouses are closed not because of the mandate. They are closed because of people who are refusing to protect themselves, their families, their colleagues and the public by getting a safe and effective vaccine."

To date, 91% of city workers have received one dose of vaccine but at least 24,200 are still unvaxxed.