With COVID-19 rates rising sharply across the country recently, metropolitan areas across the United States are taking steps to curb transmission – some moderately, others drastically.
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Tuesday that New York City would be required to provide proof of vaccination for anyone who visits a restaurant, fitness center, or indoor entertainment center. The new guideline will be introduced gradually after it comes into force on August 16.
“It will require vaccination for workers and customers in indoor restaurants, indoor fitness facilities, and indoor entertainment facilities. This will be a requirement. The only way to patronize these facilities indoors is to have at least one vaccination, ”said de Blasio. “The goal here is to convince everyone that now is the time. If we want to stop the Delta variant, now is the time. And that means getting vaccinated now. “
Over the course of a month, de Blasio said the city will work to “educate people, go to companies, receive calls from companies, answer questions and concerns, and make sure everyone understands the new approach. And then, on September 13th, this week we will start inspections and enforcement. “
The mid-September deadline is noteworthy, as city activities tend to start to pick up in the week after Labor Day, he continued. Evidence of vaccination can come from either a card, the NYC COVID SAFE app, or the state’s Excelsior app.
“Everyone, this summer has already been great in this city and there will be many more to come. This approach needs to make it clear – if you want to enjoy all the great in New York City during the summer, get vaccinated. It will do so many things for you. It will make your life better. It will improve all of our lives, ”said de Blasio.
So far, New York City is the only American community to have implemented such a mandate. It’s a controversial move.
Regarding de Blasio’s new policy, incumbent Mayor Kim Janey made it clear Tuesday that Boston will not take similar action anytime soon, citing America’s dark history with documentation as a reason to avoid the action. according to the Boston Herald.
“Whether we talk about it, you know, as a way to get after – during slavery, after slavery, as young as you know what the immigrant population is going through,” said Janey, adding, “We have Trump with the birth certificates – Heard nonsense. Here we want to make sure we don’t do anything that further impedes Boston residents or disproportionately affects the BIPOC communities. “
Janey later clarified her remarks on a Twitter thread, Local governments and leaders need to “consider our shared history as we work to ensure equitable public health and economic recovery.” As for the preventive measures Boston is taking, Janey said, “We use data to educate targeted public health strategies. This includes meeting with restaurants and bars to discuss any overlap between their clientele and new COVID-19 case trends. “
Elsewhere, mMost large cities and counties are reinstating or implementing at least one type of policy aimed at stopping the increasing spread of the coronavirus through local communities – even if state policies are more restrictive.
Miami-Dade County, for example, has reintroduced its mask mandate as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (which have rolled back their masking guidelines for areas with high transmission rates). At the same time, Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis has banned some preventive measures like vaccination certificates. And recently, DeSantis signed an executive order that withheld government funding from school districts that require students to wear masks. In a statement, Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava cited “a huge and alarming increase in COVID cases in our community” as the reason for the reintroduction of the mask requirement.
With a nationwide immunization rate of 70 percent among eligible Americans, governors, mayors, and community leaders are simultaneously increasing the rhetoric in line with stricter prevention guidelines.
“Please get vaccinated if you are not already. Period. Those people back there went crazy. You are out of your mind, “New Jersey Governor Dunton Murphy said, delivering his comments to protesters at a law-signing event in Union City on Wednesday, as documented in a transcription video sent by. has been recorded NJ.com. “You are the ultimate knuckleheads. People lose their lives because of what you say. “
Murphy announced Monday that New Jersey state employees in certain sectors and frontline health workers will need to provide evidence of vaccination or be tested regularly.
In particular, state and local governments can legally impose vaccine mandates on voters under Jacobson v Massachusetts, a 1905 Supreme Court ruling that allowed states to require residents to be vaccinated against smallpox. The federal government cannot do that.
Likewise, employers in both the private and public sectors have the right to require employees to be vaccinated – a move taken by hundreds of public universities and private companies including Walmart, Google, Tyson Foods, and Uber, among others.
The federal government and the states of California, South Carolina, New Jersey, Massachusetts and New York have also exercised the same right to require vaccinations for at least some employees. The Office of Equal Opportunities and the US Department of Justice recently ruled separately that such action is legally permissible.