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New York Readies to Enforce Vaccine Mandate for Health Care Workers


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New York Readies to Enforce Vaccine Mandate for Health Care Workers

Gov. Kathy C. Hochul said New York would work with hospitals to address potential staffing shortages as a mandate requiring health care workers to have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine goes into effect.

Can’t we just say that that is a basic right that everyone has, to know that they’ll be safe when they enter a health care facility, or you have your elderly parents or grandparents in a nursing home, that they will not get sick because of someone who’s charged with their care? I need to keep people in this state safe, and we’ll be nation-leading with our mandate, which strikes at midnight tonight when everyone is expected in a hospital in the State of New York or a health care facility to have been vaccinated. And so I’m calling on all the health care workers. First of all, those of you who’ve been vaccinated, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for doing what was right and helping lead the way so we do have the confidence we need. And to those who’ve not yet made that decision, please do the right thing. I will be signing an executive order to give me the emergency powers necessary to address these shortages where they occur. That’s going to allow me to deploy the National Guard, who are medically trained, deploy people who’ve been retired, who may have had a license lapse, bring in people from elsewhere. It’s not a role I relish. My default position is to ask people, please do this. This is why it’s been proven to be safe. The vaccine’s been out there a long time now. There are not legitimate religious exemptions because the leaders of all the organized religions have said there’s no legitimate reason, and we’re going to win that in court in a matter of days. And so this is so unnecessary. We’re taking all the steps preemptively in anticipation of what I call a preventable staffing shortage. Still preventable — enough hours in a day. Come on down. Go to this place. There’s plenty of places that can make this be a preventable — something that we just went through an exercise for but didn’t need to. But I also am realistic to know that there are people who will not come back to their jobs.

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