NYC Won’t Meet Its Deadline To Review COVID-19 Vaccine Exemptions For Municipal Workers

NYC Won’t Meet Its Deadline To Review COVID-19 Vaccine Exemptions For Municipal Workers

New York Metropolis companies received’t meet a self-imposed deadline to evaluate the estimated 14,400 requests for COVID-19 vaccine exemptions, Mayor Invoice de Blasio confirmed at a press convention Wednesday.

The missed deadline means round 6,100 law enforcement officials, 1,500 firefighters and 1,300 sanitation employees can nonetheless report back to work as typical with out being vaccinated, whereas their purposes are being vetted. Citywide, the variety of new coronavirus infections and positivity price are ticking upward, pushed primarily by unvaccinated folks.

The Citywide Workplace of Administrative Providers had set a Thanksgiving deadline, by which all determinations and appeals have been speculated to be settled. However at his common briefing a day forward of the cutoff, de Blasio admitted town was nowhere near assembly that timeframe. Town’s COVID-19 vaccine took full impact on November 1st.

“It’s obviously way too big a number to get through on that timeline,” he stated. Requested what number of purposes had been reviewed, de Blasio declined to present specifics, besides that “relatively few” had been accomplished. He additionally refused to set forth a brand new timeline for when exemptions could be reviewed.

By Monday, town’s workforce had a vaccination price of 94% in response to metropolis knowledge. However the NYPD, Division of Sanitation and New York Metropolis firefighters are nonetheless lagging behind. All have protection charges under 90%.

“Each agency is purposefully working through them. They’ll get the job done by definition,” de Blasio stated. His press workplace didn’t return a request for clarification.

NYPD officers had utilized for thrice as many spiritual and medical exemptions as another metropolis company. Talking on NY1 Tuesday morning, NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea stated up to now the company had made it by means of 1,100 of these requests and denied most of them — however he didn’t present a exact variety of rejections. A number of hundred of these folks have since gotten vaccinated, he stated, including that he anticipated others to attraction their denials.

“There was a very small number that were granted exemptions and those notifications went out in the last four to five days,” Shea stated. General, the NYPD has a COVID-19 vaccination price of 87%

The Division of Correction stays town company with the bottom vaccination price at 72%. However its officers obtained an prolonged deadline relative to different municipal employees below the mandate. Correction officers have till December 1st to take a primary dose of COVID-19 vaccine. The extension was granted attributable to ongoing issues about low staffing ranges on the Rikers jail advanced which has contributed to worsening situations there.

De Blasio has promised to take a strict interpretation on who could be accredited for non secular and medical exemptions. In keeping with steerage from the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention, solely employees with extreme allergic reactions to the COVID-19 vaccines — that are uncommon — shall be allotted everlasting medical exemptions. Non secular exemptions shall be accredited primarily based on an individual’s “sincerely held religious, moral or ethical belief.” Private, political or philosophical preferences received’t reduce it, in response to metropolis steerage.

Elizabeth Kim contributed reporting.

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