New York City Enforces Vaccination Mandate on DOE Employees – The Ticker
Starting September 27, all employees of the New York City Department of Education will be required to provide proof of at least the first dose of COVID-19 vaccination, according to Mayor Bill de Blasio and the department’s commissioner. from Health and Mental Hygiene, Dr. Dave Chokshi.
“Keeping our students and staff in good health is our top priority”, Mayor de Blasio noted in a press release. “To keep our schools healthy and safe, we are now requiring all education ministry staff to receive at least one dose of the vaccine by September 27. Together, we will create a safe and welcoming school experience for our children. ”
According to the New York Times, employees of the New York Department of Education are part of the “first group of municipal workers” who will face a full vaccination warrant in order to resume teaching in person. This mandate affects more than 1,448,000 school personnel.
City officials have said that “over 63 percent of education department employees are vaccinated,” but that percentage does not reflect the number of those who received their vaccinations outside of New York City. In addition, about “75 percent of teachers who live in the city have received at least one dose and 43 percent of police department employees have been vaccinated,” according to the New York Times.
“As a parent, I always put the health and safety of my children first. Parents can rest assured this fall that their school communities and the phenomenal school staff our children interact with every day are protected by safe and effective vaccines, ”said New York Schools Chancellor Meisha Porter. noted. “This is another layer of our multi-layered health and safety strategy and an important step in keeping our school communities safe. “
There have been mixed reactions from educators, government officials and education unions in response to the city’s new mandate. Unions like DC37, New York’s largest public union, said de Blasio did not have “the legal authority to change terms and conditions of employment without negotiation,” and went on to say that the union, with several others would file an “unfair labor practice complaint,” as Spectrum News NY1 stated.
De Blasio said he was starting to work “immediately” with unions to fully respond to the new vaccination mandate.
“Our first priority is to keep our children safe and schools open”, Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Teachers’ Federation, noted in a report. “The city’s teachers have led the way on this issue, with the vast majority already vaccinated. As the city asserts its legal authority to establish this mandate, there are many implementation details, including provisions for medical exceptions, which by law must be negotiated with the UFT and other unions. and, if necessary, resolved by arbitration.