That NYC teacher vax mandate is back on hold

That NYC teacher vax mandate is back on hold
AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Yesterday we discussed the Tuesday mandatory vaccination deadline for teachers in New York City’s public school system. While as much as 90% of the teaching staff in the city reports being vaccinated, the school system is so large that there will still be thousands of teachers not in compliance. The unvaccinated staff would be given a choice of either resigning with severance pay or going on unpaid leave while still maintaining their healthcare benefits. Some of the larger schools were set to be missing more than 100 teachers on Tuesday morning.

As I immediately predicted, the teacher’s union wasn’t about to stand for that and they were going to court to demand that the deadline be pushed back. They received an immediate hearing from the Second Circuit and to the surprise of almost no one, they received an injunction blocking the deadline. (Reuters)

A requirement for New York City school teachers and staff to get vaccinated for COVID-19 was temporarily blocked by a U.S. appeals court just days before it was to take effect, but the court on Saturday set a hearing on the matter for next week.

Mayor Bill de Blasio last month set Monday as the deadline for 148,000 staff members of the largest U.S. school system to get at least one dose of a vaccine under a mandate aimed at slowing the spread of the highly contagious Delta variant. read more

But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit late on Friday blocked the deadline by granting a temporary injunction to a small group of public school teachers and paraprofessionals who are challenging the mandate, which does not allow for weekly testing as an alternative.

A hearing is set for Wednesday, at which point we should learn if a new deadline will be set or if the mandate will be scrapped or put on hold for a longer period of time. The suit was brought by a group of teachers and paraprofessionals who oppose the mandate and want an option for weekly COVID testing of unvaccinated teachers to be included.

Since this story is getting little to no traction in the mainstream media, we’re left with the same question that should have been being asked from the beginning. Where is the outrage over this? Aren’t these teachers “endangering the vaccinated” and standing in the way of “following the science?” This mandate was put in place by New York City’s Democratic Mayor and is in line with the Democratic President’s recent orders. Why aren’t progressive Democrats and their faithful stenographers in the liberal media setting their hair on fire over this?

Apparently, the level of outrage your receive depends entirely on which partisan team you play for these days. As you’ll recall, when Joe Biden issued his mandatory vaccination orders for all federal employees, the postal workers were granted an exemption after their union objected. But if that’s where we’re drawing the lines, why wouldn’t the New York City teachers’ unions gain the same advantage? They’re just as big of a group of Democratic cheerleaders (and campaign contributors) as the postal workers’ union, and they have a vastly larger number of members.

If everyone was actually being forced to play by the same rules, the unvaccinated teachers would all be shown the door on Tuesday. You if you’ve been following Democratic politics for any amount of time, particularly when it comes to the unions, you already know that’s not going to happen. State and municipal governments around the country have been bending over backward for the teachers’ unions since the beginning of the pandemic, even as those unions fought tooth and nail to keep the schools closed. They’re not about to stop now. The unions represent too many liberal votes and too much campaign cash to force their hands at this point. You may rest assured that some sort of “deal” is on the way.

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David Strom 5:21 PM on June 02, 2023