The city announced Saturday that one in six New York City municipal workers was still unvaccinated despite Friday’s deadline for proof that they had received at least one dose.
The vaccination rate for police officers, firefighters and garbage collectors rose to 83% Friday night after a rush of last-minute jabs. This is an increase of 76% from the previous day.
More than 26,000 employees who don’t comply with the requirement will be placed on unpaid leave beginning Monday. This leaves the Big Apple facing the possibility of closing firehouses, fewer officers and ambulances, and increasing trash.
The city’s sanitation and fire departments saw a significant increase in vaccination rates Friday, as workers scrambled to meet the deadline. There was also an incentive: 500 dollars for those who receive a shot before Friday.
According to data from the city, the fire department had a rate increase of 8% while sanitation saw an additional 10% get vaccinated on Friday. Each of the fire and sanitation departments still has 23% of its staff that have not been vaccinated.
Friday’s vaccination increase by 5% in the NYPD left 16% of officers without a shot.
Officials in the city have been considering various options to address an anticipated staff shortage on Monday.
According to the fire department, it is prepared to close 20% of its fire departments and have 20% less ambulances in service. It also plans to change schedules, cancel vacations, and turn to outside EMS providers to fill expected staffing shortages.
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that the sanitation department will shift to 12-hour shifts instead of the 8-hour shifts and will begin working Sundays to remove trash from the streets.