vaccinations in nyc

Vax Rate Increased Since ‘Key to NYC' Mandate Went Into Effect Last Month: de Blasio

Only 15 violations were handed out since the vaccine requirement for indoor businesses became official Sept. 13

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What to Know

  • A month after the "Key to NYC" vaccine mandate for indoor businesses went into effect, the city has seen an increase in the vaccination rate among New Yorkers, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday.
  • Over the past month, since the mandate went into effect Sept. 13, the overall vaccination rate increased 9 percent. Meanwhile, the vaccination rate among the age group 18-34 increased 13 percent.
  • The "Key to NYC" policy calls for nearly three dozen indoor businesses in New York City subject to the citywide proof-of-vaccination mandate, including restaurants, gyms and theaters, to face fines of $1,000 fine for non-compliance.

A month after the "Key to NYC" vaccine mandate for indoor businesses went into effect, the city has seen an increase in the vaccination rate among New Yorkers, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday.

"Today is the one month anniversary of the 'Key to NYC' policy going into full effect. 'Key to NYC' is based on a simple concept: vaccines are the answer. Vaccination unlocks our recovery, makes everything else possible. We are seeing it before our very eyes as more and more comes back in our city," he said.

Over the past month, since the mandate went into effect Sept. 13, the overall vaccination rate increased 9 percent. Meanwhile, the vaccination rate among the age group 18-34 increased 13 percent.

"That’s huge in terms of saving lives, in terms of protecting people, in terms of bring New York City back," the mayor said referring to the increase in vaccination rates.

According to de Blasio, the idea behind the mandate was to get as many New Yorkers vaccinated since many would if it meant enjoying the many activities the city has to offer.

"We knew that New Yorkers love everything about our city that makes it great: our restaurants….all the kinds of entertainment this city is famous for. People want to be a part of that and so they went out and got vaccinated," he said.

The "Key to NYC" policy calls for nearly three dozen indoor businesses in New York City subject to the citywide proof-of-vaccination mandate for patrons, including restaurants, gyms and theaters, to face fines of $1,000 fine for non-compliance.

De Blasio's vaccine requirement, which requires businesses to ask customers for proof of at least partial immunization upon entry, had been in place for weeks but wasn't enforced by the city until Sept. 13.

There are exceptions to the rule, including children under 12 — who are not yet eligible for vaccination — as well as athletes, contractors and some non-NYC-based performers. The policy also excludes church potlucks, community centers, office buildings, house parties (even if they're catered) and people who briefly duck in somewhere to pick up food or use a bathroom, among other exemptions.

A major part of the "Key to NYC" policy was getting businesses, particularly mom and pop shops and restaurants on board, by having city workers share with them the most up-to-date information and how they can implement such rules in their businesses.

"We knew to do this right we had to work with the small business, the mom and pop restaurants, all the folks out there, who were going to be a part of this….so we sent out teams of city officials and experts to talk to people to work it through at the grassroots," the mayor said.

After sending out city officials to businesses, which totaled canvassing over 50,000 businesses and included over 31,000 inspections, de Blasio said "Key to NYC" has been successful with only 15 violations in the span of a month.

"They canvassed over 50,000 businesses talking through how to do this right way…assisted thousands of businesses…and because that work was done to get things right to begin with we’ve seen the launch of 'Key to NYC' go very smoothly," the mayor said. "So far there has been over 31,000 inspections all across New York City to make sure the 'Key to NYC' approach was working. And, so far after, a full month...there has only been 15 violations.

"The vast majority of businesses are keeping everyone safe, their employees, their customers."

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