By Adaneka Witter, Legal Intern and Rachel H. Khedouri, Esq.
As he received his own COVID-19 bivalent booster shot, Mayor Eric Adams recently announced that New York City’s vaccine requirement for private-sector employees who interact with the public in the workplace will no longer be mandatory as of November 1, 2022. Click HERE and HERE to review our December 2021 eAlerts announcing the implementation of NYC’s “first-in-the-nation” vaccine mandate and outlining the subsequent guidance issued by the City to clarify employer obligations under the mandate, including banning unvaccinated individuals from the workplace, with limited exceptions.
In announcing withdrawal of the mandate, Mayor Adams, along with NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Commissioner Dr. Arwin Vasan, made clear that NYC continues to encourage all eligible individuals to receive vaccinations, including applicable boosters. Nevertheless, as of November 1, private businesses are free to make their own determination as to appropriate vaccine protocols for their workforce. Employers are encouraged to examine their vaccination policies and procedures and determine whether any revisions should be made in light of the end of the mandate.
Note that, although the original requirement applied to both public and private-sector employees, the lifting of the mandate applies only to the private sector. An open question remains as to whether NYC will issue any vaccination requirements relating to private-sector employees who have contact with City employees or the public under government contracts.
NFC will continue to keep you apprised of developments relating to NYC COVID-19 workplace requirements. If you have any questions relating to vaccine mandates or other COVID-19 regulations or would like guidance adjusting your company’s policies in the wake of the NYC’s repeal of its vaccine mandate, please feel free to reach out to the NFC Attorney with whom you typically work or call us at 973.665.9100.