Adams Announces de Blasio’s Vaccine Mandates Will Continue Under New Administration

NEW YORK -
(Reuvain Borchardt/Hamodia)

The private business vaccine mandate implemented by outgoing-Mayor Bill de Blasio will remain in effect when mayoral-elect Eric Adams is sworn in, Adams announced on Thursday. Other vaccine and mask mandates are staying in place.

Adams, however, said there would be no fines on private sector mandates as of now, and the city is focusing on compliance, rather than emphasizing legal consequences.

“I don’t want to be heavy-handed or punitive in this approach,” Adams said, adding he met with business leaders to alert them to the change in policy.

Adams also announced he had appointed Frank Carone, a powerful lawyer in Brooklyn politics, to be his chief-of-staff.

Health Commissioner Dr. David Chokshi, who will stay on in the Adams administration through March, said that a booster may be required for someone to be considered complying with the vaccine mandate.

“The city will provide clear testing protocols for specific settings, including the private sector,” Adams said, including a comprehensive testing and quarantine plan for public schools. The city will be sending out millions of at-home tests to educators and students. Additionally, 2 million KN95 and other high-grade masks will be distributed throughout the city.

As for mandating vaccines for students, Adams said that was decision that had to be made on a state level and the official who will decide that is Governor Kathy Hochul.

Like Hochul and de Blasio, Adams urged people to return to working in person to help the city’s economic recovery.

“As soon as we see a decline in the surge… it’s crucial to get as many of us back into office spaces as possible,” he said.

He said as a show of confidence, he would spend the afternoon walking around Manhattan and meet with tourists and residents.

“We’re at the point where we must learn to live safely with covid,” Adams said.

Chokshi, however, was less optimistic, saying, “we should prepare for a challenging few weeks” ahead, as coronavirus cases surge throughout New York City, driven by the highly-infectious omicron variant and the usual rise in respiratory illness that comes during the winter months.

“Keep our city open,” Adams stressed. “That’s the goal. We can’t shut down our city again.”