Trash piled up in areas of New York City leading up to the deadline for city workers to get their COVID-19 vaccine, which was October 29.
NBC News reported that people have been posting about missed trash collections on social media.
“Missed collections were reported in Staten Island and Brooklyn. And residents have taken to social media in outrage over the accumulating garbage and to raise concern that the slowdown is intentional in protest of the vaccine mandate,” the outlet reported.
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Mayor Bill de Blasio, who announced last week that city workers were required to have received at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine by Friday at 5 p.m. or be placed on unpaid leave, said that supervisors at the department of sanitation would not allow missed collections to continue, though neither he nor the sanitation department would say if the slowdown was on purpose.
“Anyone who is not doing their job, you’re harming your fellow sanitation workers, and you’re harming your neighbors, and you’re harming your city,” de Blasio said. “And it’s time to stop.”
NYC’s sanitation department released its own statement, saying it was “aware that there are collection delays.”
Sixty-seven percent of NYC sanitation workers are vaccinated, the outlet reported.
As The Daily Wire reported, NYC is struggling to get city workers vaccinated after implementing a mandate. The city could lose up to 30% of its police force and fire department now that the deadline to receive the vaccine has passed.
“New York City took one of its most aggressive steps yet to increase vaccination rates in a city that was once the epicenter of the pandemic, requiring almost every member of the nation’s largest municipal workforce to get vaccinated by the end of the month or lose their paychecks,” The New York Times reported last week.
“The new mandate by Mayor Bill de Blasio, following similar requirements for teachers and health care workers that led to a surge in vaccinations, is intended to persuade thousands of city workers who have resisted getting the shot to do so before the winter,” the outlet added.
Last week, Quartz estimated that about “6,500 New York Police Department (NYPD) employees—or roughly 30% of the agency’s total workforce of 36,000 officers and 19,000 civilians” would be affected, since they had refused to get the vaccine.
Last Wednesday, NYC’s firefighters union warned that the city’s 911 dispatchers and emergency medical technicians could also see a major drop in its workforce due to the mandate.
Other cities with vaccine mandates have not seen the major employment drops even as their deadlines came and went, The Daily Wire reported.
“Chicago, one of the first municipalities to institute such a mandate over the objections of unions, was bracing for a similar walk-off, but just 21 officers were placed on unpaid leave for not reporting their vaccination status to city officials. Chicago noted that around 67% of the police force had entered its vaccination status and around 80% had received at least one dose of the vaccine, according to The Associated Press,” The Daily Wire noted.