In New York City, the deadline for city workers to provide proof of vaccination against COVID has come and gone. Those who failed to comply were previously informed that if they continued in their refusals, they would face disciplinary action up to and including the termination of their employment. According to records that the city released yesterday, they weren’t kidding. The new Mayor of Gotham authorized the dismissal of more than 1,400 workers. The newly unemployed include both first responders and public school teachers and staff members. And depending on the outcome of a review of exemption requests, the number could climb much, much higher. (NY Post)
Mayor Eric Adams fired more than 1,400 government workers who refused to get vaccinated, the city revealed on Monday — including 36 NYPD personnel, 25 Fire Department workers and 914 Department of Education staffers.
The number had dropped considerably by last Friday’s vaccine mandate deadline as more employees submitted proof of getting at least one shot, City Hall officials said.
At one point last week, officials estimated that 4,000 were on the chopping block.
Matching this report against previous estimates, it’s clear that threatening people’s livelihoods was enough of a motivating factor to force a lot of workers who didn’t wish to be vaccinated to take the shots anyway. Only two weeks ago it was reported that as many as 4,000 workers were non-compliant and facing termination. Last week the number dropped to a little more than three thousand. And by the final day, only 1,400 or so remained in that category and were terminated.
Records indicate that at least 1,000 workers held out until the final week before finally giving in and agreeing to the injections. But this isn’t the end of the story by a long shot. Of the 13,044 city workers who applied for religious or medical exemptions from the mandate, more than 6,000 have yet to be decided. If their request is denied, they will be right back where the rest of those who refused to comply found themselves and they too will head for the unemployment line unless they cave and roll up their sleeves.
If the results of those requests are anything like the first 7,000 that were processed, the ax will being swinging many more times. Almost 5,000 of the requests were denied while a little more than 2,000 were approved. That works out to a roughly 70% denial rate. Assuming the same rate applies to the remaining applicants we could be looking at more than 4,000 additional firings unless the applicants provide an immunity passport.
You have to wonder how many of those recently “converted” workers actually received a vaccination and how many of them paid for a fake CDC card. After all, it would only have been a short ride over the bridge to Long Island for any of them to visit the couple that made millions of dollars selling fake and virtually undetectable cards. They put as many as 12,000 fake CDC cards out on the streets and they entered their customers’ names into the state vaccination database, so they would likely pass muster for these municipal workers. And that couple was far from the only ones doing it.
But at least the city government gets to look like they’re in charge and doing something to stop the spread of the virus. I’m sure we’re all taking a lot of comfort from that knowledge this week. (/sarc)