"We've got to put this COVID era behind us... We've been living with this now for most of two years. We got to put it behind us and vaccine mandates in my experience are the one thing that really breaks through."

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a sweeping coronavirus vaccine mandate for all private employers in New York City on Monday morning to combat the spread of the Omicron variant, the New York Times reports.

Mr. de Blasio said the aggressive measure, which takes effect Dec. 27 and which he described as the first of its kind in the nation, was needed as a “pre-emptive strike” to stall another wave of coronavirus cases and help reduce transmission during the winter months and holiday gatherings.

“Omicron is here, and it looks like it’s very transmissible,” he said in an interview on MSNBC. “The timing is horrible with the winter months.”

New York City has already put vaccine mandates in place for city workers and for indoor dining, entertainment and gyms. Nearly 90 percent of adults in the city now have at least one dose of the vaccine.

But Mr. de Blasio said the city must go further to combat another wave of the virus in New York City, once the epicenter of the pandemic. Some private employers have required employees to get vaccinated, but many others have not. Mr. de Blasio said the new measure would apply to about 184,000 businesses.

Read more

© Copyright LaPresse