Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday the state of New York will begin mandating COVID-19 vaccinations or testing for state employees on Sep. 1.
Cuomo’s plan is modeled after President Joe Biden’s vaccination and testing requirement plans for federal workers, according to WHAM-TV in New York. The governor said he is discussing the plan with union leaders ahead of its rollout, and he will also mandate vaccines for state healthcare workers with no testing alternative option.
Our healthcare workers carried us through this pandemic—and we owe it to them to do what we can to keep Delta under control.
NYS will require patient-facing healthcare workers at State hospitals to get vaccinated to help keep both patients and workers safe.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) July 28, 2021
Cuomo cited a surge in delta variant-driven cases in New York as a reason for the mandate. He pointed out there are still 3.5 million New Yorkers who are unvaccinated and called on private businesses to incentivize vaccination by closing their doors to the unvaccinated. (RELATED: ANALYSIS: Maybe The ‘Disaster Emergency’ In New York Is Andrew Cuomo)
He also confirmed the state is reviewing a possible reimplementation of mask mandates following a shift in guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which is now recommending that vaccinated Americans again wear face coverings in certain indoor spaces.