New York City will require that all of its workers get vaccinated against Covid-19 after eliminating the option for testing and joining a group of state and local governments with similar mandates.
Employees that refuse to comply will be placed on unpaid leave and City Hall officials plan to negotiate in the coming days with labor unions about procedures that would follow. The city already requires vaccines for educational and public healthcare workers. Among the 167,000 employees of the city’s school system, 96% have complied. President Biden announced in September that federal employees must be fully vaccinated by Nov. 22 or face discipline, up to termination. The Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration is crafting rules that will require private-sector workers at firms with 100 or more employees to be vaccinated or regularly tested for Covid-19.
The vaccination mandate in the nation’s largest school system does not include a test-out option but does allow for medical and religious exemptions. Some principals aren’t able find enough staff to replace unvaccinated workers. Many students and parents of students think it is a safer option for them and their children and think all teachers should be vaccinated.