The COVID-19 vaccine mandate for teachers and staff in New York City schools has temporarily been blocked by a federal judge. This news comes only three days before the mandate was set to take effect on Monday, Sept. 27.
Late Friday, Sept. 24, a judge for the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted a temporary injunction and referred the case to a three-judge panel on an expedited basis.
Before the ruling, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Monday, Sept. 20 that all Department of Education staff for public schools across the city will have to be vaccinated against COVID-19, without a testing alternative. If a department employee had not received their first dose of the vaccine before Sept. 27, they could face being separated from work or suspended without pay.
Danielle Filson, the spokesperson for the Department of Education, says that they will be working to ensure that all will be resolved by the end of next week.
“We’re confident our vaccine mandate will continue to be upheld once all the facts have been presented, because that is the level of protection our students and staff deserve,” Filson said.
While more than 82 percent of department employees have already been vaccinated, the mandate going into effect can leave approximately 10,000 city teachers at risk of losing their jobs.