NYC employers must soon mandate proof of COVID-19 vaccine, de Blasio announces

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Mayor Bill de Blasio on Monday announced a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for all private businesses in New York City — one that will take effect days before he leaves office and with the city already recording among the highest vaccination rates and lowest infection rates in the nation.
De Blasio, whose mayoralty ends at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, declared making vaccines compulsory for private businesses a “preemptive strike” against an expected surge in COVID infections this winter amid the emergence of the Omicron variant
. “We’re going to announce a first-in-the-nation measure,” de Blasio said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” Hizzoner added that the mandate is aimed at “maximizing vaccination quickly, so we can get ahead of Omicron and all the other challenges we’re facing right now.”
The city so far has only seven known cases of the new variant, according to state data released Saturday.
The policy is scheduled to go into effect Dec. 27 — and it drew immediate rebuke from New Yorkers and the Big Apple’s business community.