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Judge says NYC public employee vaccine mandate can take effect
Posted by: Steve G.
Date: October 27, 2021 06:42PM
Judge won’t stop vaccine mandate for NYC cops, other workers

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York judge on Wednesday refused to pause a vaccine mandate set to take effect Friday for the city’s municipal workforce, denying a police union’s request for a temporarily restraining order.

Judge Lizette Colon ruled that the city’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate can take effect as scheduled while also ordering city officials to appear in court Nov. 12 to defend the requirement against a union lawsuit seeking to have it declared illegal.

At the same time, the city’s fire department said it was preparing to have 20% of its fire companies closed and 20% fewer ambulances on the roads as a result of personnel refusing to get vaccinated.

Colon, whose court is on Staten Island, ruled hours after hearing arguments from lawyers for the Police Benevolent Association, the city’s largest police union, and the city, which prevailed in arguing the mandate should be implemented without delay.

Police officers, firefighters, garbage collectors and most other city workers must show proof that they’ve gotten at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by 5 p.m. Friday. Workers who don’t comply will be put on unpaid leave starting Nov. 1. Previously, city workers were able to show proof of a negative test to stay on the job.
As of Tuesday, 73% of police department personnel had gotten at least one vaccine dose, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea told WPIX-TV on Wednesday. The NYPD did not provide specific answers when asked how it will manage personnel levels and public safety if one-quarter of its workforce — including thousands of officers — is put on unpaid leave for noncompliance.
The fire department reported a vaccination rate of 68% as of Wednesday. A firefighters union said it was holding a rally Thursday outside Mayor Bill de Blasio’s residence to protest the mandate.

Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said in a statement Wednesday night that the FDNY “will use all means at our disposal, including mandatory overtime, mutual aid from other EMS providers, and significant changes to the schedules of our members to ensure continuity of operations.”

Also Wednesday, a federal appeals panel presiding in another mandate-related case seemed to be supportive of arguments that a New York state vaccine mandate for health care workers does not violate their Constitutional rights even though the mandate doesn’t provide religious exemptions.

The three-judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals did not immediately rule, but largely seemed in agreement with oral arguments by a state lawyer. The arguments came after a Utica federal judge ruled that the mandate violated workers’ Constitutional rights.

In an August order, the state required at least a first shot for health care workers at hospitals and nursing homes by Sept. 27, and more recently expanded the requirement to include workers at assisted living homes, hospice care, treatment centers and home health aides.

Attorney Steven Wu, New York’s deputy solicitor general, said under the mandate, employers can allow religious exemptions when the workers agree not to work on the front lines directly with patients. Religious exemption requests are as much as 20 to 30 times higher than medical exemption requests in the northern part of the state, Wu said.
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Re: Judge says NYC public employee vaccine mandate can take effect
Posted by: Steve G.
Date: October 27, 2021 06:42PM
The plaintiffs, all Christians, oppose as a matter of religious conviction any medical cooperation in abortion, including the use of vaccines linked to fetal cell lines in testing, development or production, according to court papers.

The court papers said all of the available vaccines employ aborted fetus cell lines in their testing, development or production. But religious leaders have disagreed over the issue and the Vatican issued a statement last year saying the vaccines were “morally acceptable.”
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Re: Judge says NYC public employee vaccine mandate can take effect
Posted by: Acer
Date: October 27, 2021 06:59PM
I'm offended by Christians who construct a "religious exception" out of whole cloth and claim righteousness through it.
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Re: Judge says NYC public employee vaccine mandate can take effect
Posted by: Marc Anthony
Date: October 27, 2021 07:41PM
The morality argument about 'cooperating in abortion' is an intentional distortion. Most fetal cell lines used in vaccines are from the 70's, and any benefit is derived strictly as a byproduct of past research into cells from an embryo that wasn't going to finish development anyway; it's not like scientists just went out and killed a baby, nor are human cells present in vaccine. People endorsing this argument should renounce all health care, as that's 'cooperating' with unwitting human experimentation from the distant past.

Le poète doit vivre beaucoup, vivre dans tous les sens. - Verlaine
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