NYC Mandates Vaccines for All Teachers and Staff

On the heels of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) announcement that it had fully approved Pfizer and BioTech’s Covid-19 vaccine, New York City will require every Department of Education employee to have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine by September 27. There is no ability to opt out.

“The new, stricter mandate, which was announced on Monday, will affect some 148,000 city employees. It is an escalation in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s effort to slow the spread of the Delta variant by getting more city residents vaccinated,” The New York Times reported.

Mayor de Blasio made his announcement earlier this morning.

“The New York City Department of Health will be issuing an order requiring all staff in the New York City public schools to be vaccinated,” de Blasio said. “This will require all staff of every kind––principals, teachers, custodians, food service, you name it––needs to have one dose by September 27.

Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers, estimates that about 80% of the organization’s members have been vaccinated.

In a statement, he said, “Our first priority is keeping our kids safe, and the schools open.  The city’s teachers have led the way on this issue, with the great majority already vaccinated.  While the city is asserting its legal authority to establish this mandate, there are many implementation details, including provisions for medical exceptions, that by law must be negotiated with the UFT and other unions, and if necessary, resolved by arbitration.”