New York teachers’ vaccination mandate suspended
A federal appeals court has held back the city’s mandate that all teachers and other school workers must be vaccinated by Monday – but a reprieve for holdouts could be short-lived.
On Friday evening, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit granted a temporary injunction against the warrant and referred the case to a panel of three judges for a “expedited review” – as early as this weekend, according to a report.
“We are confident that our immunization mandate will continue to be met once all the facts have been presented, as this is the level of protection that our students and staff deserve,” said Danielle Filson, spokesperson for the City Ministry of Education.
She did not immediately say when the review was scheduled, but added: “We are seeking an early resolution by the Circuit Court next week.”
The DOE emailed city directors on Saturday morning saying they “and their school communities should continue to prepare for the possibility of the vaccination mandate going into effect later in the week.”
Meanwhile, the DOE’s current “vax-or-test” mandate remains in effect, she said.
“Over 82% of DOE employees have been vaccinated and we continue to urge all employees to be vaccinated by September 27,” said Filson.
But up to 28,000 school workers still have to comply.
In addition, nearly 1,500 unvaccinated school safety officers – out of 4,300 under NYPD supervision – could also be banned from work, creating a potential safety crisis in schools.
The Teamsters union representing the agents, Local 237, is expected to file a labor complaint on Monday because those on duty next week will be forced to work 12 to 6 a.m. shifts. at 6 p.m. Monday to Friday – to fill staffing gaps.
“Rather than negotiating with Local 237 before announcing and implementing the vaccination mandate to avoid this very problem, the city and the NYPD are now placing the burden of their reckless political choice on the backs” of the agents of school safety, the complaint said, according to a copy obtained by The Post.
Meanwhile, some parents and staff were concerned about safety amid a growing number of COVID cases among students and employees were rally on Saturday at city hall, calling for a distance education option.
A New York City teacher told The Post she had no plans to get the COVID-19 vaccine and was willing to forgo her six-figure salary.
“I’ve never been so afraid to do something and I can’t bring myself to do it,” said Christina Coscia, 40, of her fears of the vaccine and its potential side effects. “I can’t spend sleepless nights thinking about what ifs.”
Coscia, the site coordinator for the District 20 preschool program in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, said she maintains a healthy lifestyle and does not worry about contracting COVID-19.
Those who continue to refuse the blow must take a year of unpaid leave with health benefits or leave the DOE with severance pay. The DOE has offered medical and religious exemptions, but would grant them sparingly.
Vaccination warrants are designed to stop the spread of COVID-19.
But Coscia, who is part of a coalition called Teachers for choice, said she does not believe vaccines save lives because even those who are vaccinated could get sick and spread the coronavirus.
Scientists say, however, that vaccinated individuals are at a much lower risk of having a severe case of COVID-19 even if they contract a breakthrough infection.
Coscia said she was unsure whether she would go on leave or quit and worried about making the mortgage payments on the Prospect Heights apartment she bought in the spring. She is paid $ 109,000.
She said her mother, a school aide, and her sister, a school secretary, were also not vaccinated and faced a similar loss of income.
“I apologized to my staff. I don’t know who is going to be put in my place, ”said a tearful Coscia. “I feel like I’m abandoning them.