Several of the main teachers unions had filed a lawsuit in the first weeks of September with New York City, not to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, and a Manhattan judge granted them a “ temporary restraining order ” that prevented enforce the mandate of the Department of Education (DOE).
A week later during the first hearing, Judge Laurence Love himself lifted the restriction by rejecting each of the plaintiffs’ arguments, which, according to them, “violated their civil rights.”
The arguments did not convince Judge Love saying that “state and federal courts have consistently held that a mandatory vaccination requirement does not violate substantive due process rights and is properly within the police power of the state.”
By Executive Order, Bill de Blasio had ordered that all education system personnel receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine offered by the city before September 27.
With the court ruling, this represents a major victory for Mayor Bill de Blasio and DOE officials, in an attempt to expand vaccination to more city residents, especially the thousands of people who work within educational institutions.
Before the Judge’s order was issued, according to DOE data, 87% of the city’s 78,000 teachers had received at least one dose of the city’s COVID-19 vaccines.
Of the DOE’s 130,000 employees, which includes all administrative staff, only 78% were vaccinated and the remaining 22% leave about 28,600 employees who have not yet been inoculated before the city-set deadline.
The ruling issued Wednesday by Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Laurence Love enforces Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Executive Order by continuing the vaccination mandate for DOE employees including teachers, custodians, school personnel. , among others found in the school system.
From the Department of Education spokeswoman Danielle Filson, described the Judge’s decision as a great victory for the children of New York City and the employees of the Department of Education.
“Your health and safety are at the center of this vaccine mandate, and we are pleased that the court has recognized the City’s legal authority to implement the health commissioner’s order effective September 27,” Filson said.
Who disagreed was the president of DC37, which represents school and cafeteria cleaners, Henrry Garrido, saying he was “disappointed” and that “force is not the answer.”
For his part, the president of the Municipal Labor Committee, Harry Nespoli, issued a statement in response to the Manhattan Judge’s vaccination ruling saying:
“This case has already led to progress in protecting the rights of our members, as the city, following the initial issuance of the restraining order by the court, admitted that there may be exceptions to the vaccine mandate. The court, although it lifted the restraining order, has not made a final decision and we are preparing additional material to support our case, “said Nespoli.
Although a final decision will be made in the coming days, Judge Laurence Love noted that the mandate established by the city, which will take effect this coming Monday, will remain.