New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday all state employees must be vaccinated against the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 or be tested regularly, effective the first full week of September.
Cuomo made the announcement initially to a group of business leaders and confirmed it on his Twitter account. In his comments there, Cuomo said vaccination or weekly testing will help protect employees' health as the more contagious delta variant of the virus spreads.
Cuomo also announced all health care workers at New York state hospitals will be required to be vaccinated. He said, “Our healthcare workers carried us through this pandemic—and we owe it to them to do what we can to keep delta under control.”
The announcement comes two days after New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a similar requirement for the city’s government workforce of 300,000 employees. And earlier this week, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced similar rules for the 246,000 state government employees there, as well as two million health care workers in the public and private sectors.
President Joe Biden is expected to announce similar requirements for federal employees later this week. A growing number of hospitals and nursing homes across the U.S. have been mandating vaccines for workers.
The mandates come as vaccination rates have fallen across the United States while new case numbers have risen — sharply, in some areas — because of the Delta variant.
Some information in this report was supplied by the Associated Press and the Reuter news services.