Story at a glance
- Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Tuesday that New York City businesses will require proof of vaccination for their employees and patrons.
- Employees will also need to be vaccinated with at least one shot.
- This comes as the delta variant circulates across the country.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) took new steps in combating the rise in new COVID-19 infections, announcing on Tuesday that people going to indoor dining, fitness and entertainment establishments will need proof of vaccination to enter.
The mandate will launch on Aug. 16 and be formally enforced by Sept. 13.
Employees and staff working at these venues will also be required to get vaccinated. At least one dose will be required.
“Climbing this ladder is giving us more and more ability to fight back the delta variant. By fighting the delta variant, we will continue our recovery and we will ultimately beat COVID-19,” he said during a press conference.
The approach, dubbed as the “Key to NYC” pass, is what de Blasio describes as a first-in-the-nation approach to vaccine mandates. He referenced private sector companies, from Google to Equinox, as being signals of the country’s direction toward vaccination requirements.
De Blasio further said that the city would coordinate with businesses to get acclimated and support them in following vaccination requirements.
“This is crucial because we know that this will encourage a lot more vaccinations,” he said, citing the New York mandate issued a few weeks ago that required city workers to get vaccinated.
Documentation that will suffice as proof of vaccination includes the vaccination card given during vaccinations, the New York City COVID Safe app or the Excelsior app run by New York state.
Within New York City, the percentage of positive tests has been increasing, rising to just more than 3 percent in the last week. This means confirmed cases are rising, as are probable cases.
Hospitalizations and deaths remain stable.
The number of new infections is nowhere near the major peaks during the initial outbreaks of the winter of 2019 and 2020, or in the winter of 2021. As the contagious delta variant circulates through the country, officials are working to prevent another surge from occurring within the city.