New York City Mayor Considers Worker Vaccine Mandates

Bill de Blasio says the “voluntary phase is over.”

Bill de Blasio says the “voluntary phase is over.”

Despite its comparatively high rate of vaccination, the Burroughs of New York City are once again experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases thanks to the spread of the delta variant. Yesterday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that, in an effort to curb the infections wherever possible, the city’s municipal workforce would be required to either get vaccinated or submit to weekly testing. Those who are not vaccinated will also be required to wear face masks at all times or face penalties.

On MSNBC’s Morning Joe, de Blasio spoke more about his decision. When asked whether he’s planning to make vaccines mandatory for workers, he said “Yes, we are climbing a ladder. I’m not answering yes to your question yet.”

“But if that’s not enough, I think we got to be ready to climb the ladder more,” he added. “We’ve got to put pressure on this situation.”

de Blasio went on to say that attempting to entice New York City residents and workers with incentives like raffles and gifts isn’t doing enough to meet the city’s vaccination goals.

“We’ve got to shake people at this point and say, ‘Come on now.’ We tried voluntary. We could not have been more kind and compassionate. Free testing, everywhere you turn, incentives, friendly, warm embrace. The voluntary phase is over,” de Blasio said..

“We can keep doing those things. I’m not saying shut it down. I’m saying voluntary alone doesn’t work,” he added. “It’s time for mandates, because it’s the only way to protect our people.”