NYC Prisons Face Crippling Staff Shortages As Thousands Defy Mayor’s Vaccination Mandate
Outgoing NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio has been widely criticized for seeming and acting out of touch with New Yorkers. And during his final weeks in Gracie Mansion, the intensely unpopular Democratic candidate may unwittingly handicap the already struggling NYC jail Riker’s Island.
To wit, the AP reports that hundreds of city department of corrections’ workers might soon be fired after missing a Tuesday deadline to either get vaccinated or see their waiver approved. The city’s DoC reported 77% of its staff had gotten at least one vaccine dose as of 1700ET on Monday. That’s the lowest rate of any city agency, meaning about 1,900 employees have yet to comply with the mandate or apply for the waiver.
The deadline for compliance was delayed a month for jail workers because of existing staffing shortages.
Jail workers who have applied for religious or medical exemptions can continue to work while their cases are reviewed, officials said. They plan to release data on Wednesday detailing how many workers sought for an exemption. But they already know that the number who have obstinately refused to do either is unsustainably high.
Those who don’t comply are supposed to be placed on unpaid leave and asked to surrender any badges or city-issued firearms (or other equipment).
What is the mayor doing about this? Well, in anticipation of the looming mandate, Mayor de Blasio on Monday issued an emergency executive order designed to beef up jail staffing by authorizing a transition to 12 hour from 8 hour shifts. Faced with a revolt over vaccine mandates, the mayor is asking remaining workers to take on more hours in a poorly paid, highly dangerous job.– READ MORE