Gov. Andrew Cuomo, in a Zoom presser Wednesday morning, said the state will require COVID-19 vaccines or mandatory COVID-19 testing for state employees starting on Labor Day.
The requirement mirrors the vaccine and testing mandate that the federal government is planning for its workers. Cuomo said he is in talks with union leaders about implementing the new requirement.
The governor has also ordered that all state health care workers must be vaccinated without the testing option.
We were on the verge my friends of pandemonium and chaos...
While 75% of adults in New York have been vaccinated, there is a significant increase in positive COVD-19 cases from the delta variant, according to the governor.
Cuomo said the number of unvaccinated people in New York stands at about 3.5 million people.
The governor said that the focus is the 177 zip codes that may have vaccine hesitancy. He is also asking businesses to create incentives for vaccination, and to only allow vaccinated people into New York businesses as a preference, citing theatres and sports venues that have already taken this route.
Commenting on revised guidance from the CDC that requires masks indoors in areas of high spread, even for vaccinated people, Cuomo said the state is doing a full review with federal and international health experts.
Governor Cuomo also again called for the repeal of SALT, saying in the last six months has cost New Yorkers over $6 billion. He again called for lawmakers in Washington to repeal SALT, saying it "would be an immediate boost".