Mayor Bill de Blasio announced today a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for all New York City workers including police and firefighters. The mandate excludes uniformed correction officers.
City employees will receive an extra $500 in their paycheck for receiving their first shot at a city-run vaccination site. This benefit will end at 5 p.m. on Oct. 29, by that point, all employees are required to have proof of at least one dose.
Unvaccinated employees will be placed on unpaid leave until they show proof of vaccination to their supervisor. Health Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi will sign a commissioner’s order today to formalize the mandate. The mandate will apply to approximately 160,500 workers.
According to city officials, 71% percent of the workers affected by this mandate have already received at least one vaccine dose.
“There is no greater privilege than serving the people of New York City, and that privilege comes with a responsibility to keep yourself and your community safe,” says Mayor Bill de Blasio. “We have led the way against COVID-19 – from fighting for the right to vaccinate front-line workers, to providing nation-leading incentives, to creating the Key to NYC mandate."
Earlier in October, the NYPD reported that a little less than 70% of their members were vaccinated. The FDNY had just less than 60% of their members vaccinated.
While the heads of both the FDNY and NYPD have backed this, some of the unions have not. The PBA released a statement saying, "The COVID-19 vaccine is a medical decision that members must make in consultation with their own health care providers.
“From the beginning of the de Blasio administration‘s haphazard vaccine rollout, we have fought to make the vaccine available to every member who chooses it, while also protecting their right to make that personal medical decision in consultation with their own doctor," PBA President Patrick J. Lynch. "Now that the city has moved to unilaterally impose a mandate, we will proceed with legal action to protect our members’ rights.”