December 8, 2021

Mayor de Blasio Announces Private-Sector Vaccine Mandate

  • Flyover Country

By: Konrad Holden

In Brief: 
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a new city-wide vaccine mandate for all private-sector workers. All private employees must be vaccinated by Dec. 27. De Blasio cited the omicron variant, the delta variant, the oncoming winter weather, and holiday gatherings as reasons for the new vaccine mandate. The mayor called the new mandate a “preemptive strike.”

The Background: 
Everyday Americans have seen very little impact from the new omicron variant, but politicians are beginning to use it as an excuse for new vaccine mandates and COVID-19 policies.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that all private-sector employees will need to be vaccinated by Dec. 27, just after Christmas. This new mandate will apply to roughly 184,000 new businesses.

"We’ve got omicron as a new factor, we’ve got the colder weather, which is going to really create additional challenges with the delta variant, we’ve got holiday gatherings," the mayor said.

The city has also expanded its “Key to NYC” program. Starting December 14th, the program will require 5-11-year-old children to show proof of vaccination before they can enter dining, fitness, and entertainment facilities. And they will have to be vaccinated before they can participate in “high-risk curricular activities” like school sports and band.

According to de Blasio, only 20% of New York’s 5-11-year-olds are currently vaccinated.

De Blasio’s announcement comes amidst a wave of federal vaccine mandates being overturned by federal courts. While there have not been any large lawsuits filed against New York City, the federal lawsuits may signal how federal courts will treat local mandates as well.

Notable Quotes: 

"We in NYC have decided to use a preemptive strike to really do something bold to stop the further growth of COVID." - NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio

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