vaccine mandate

SCOTUS Won't Block Vaccine Mandate for NYC Teachers Not Given Religious Exemptions

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What to Know

The Supreme Court of the United States has denied a request from a group of New York City public school teachers seeking to block a vaccine mandate for employees who were not given a religious exemption.

Their appeal was directed to Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who handles cases from that region. 

Sotomayor rejected an earlier challenge, filed in October, to the city’s vaccine mandate. And on Friday she rejected this one, too, with no explanation, which is the court’s usual procedure. She did not ask the city for a response, either -- another sign that the request for an injunction would likely fail.

New York City public school teachers and other school staff members are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as of October, when the controversial mandate for the largest public school district in the country went into effect.

Since then, the city also issued a mandate for all non-public school employees to provide proof of first dose of a COVID-19 vaccination as of December.

The latest SCOTUS ruling comes on the day that marks the deadline for police, firefighters, and other New York City employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Those who did not will likely face termination on Friday without proof of the shot.

That deadline was announced less than two weeks ago, months after the city's health commissioner issued an order that all municipal employees receive their vaccination series in order to work. Any city workers staring down the cutoff were notified, according to memos obtained by News 4.

Roughly 95% of the city's 370,000 municipal workers have received at least one dose, meaning there are less than 3,000 unvaccinated employees and less than 1% are poised to be dismissed Friday.

Copyright NBC New York
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