The president of the Uniformed Firefighters Association, the union that represents grassroots firefighters, said there was no organized illness. But hundreds of firefighters were feeling the side effects of the vaccine doses and were too bad to work, UFA president Andrew Ansbro said in a telephone interview Sunday morning. “Hundreds of men have flu-like symptoms, because that’s what the vaccine does to people,” Ansbro said.
When the city begins enforcing the vaccination mandate on Monday, unvaccinated city employees without a doctor or religious exemption You will be placed on leave without pay. It’s unclear how the city’s downsizing of the workforce will affect services ranging from trash pickup to ambulance wait times.
By Sunday, about 90 percent of municipal workers had received at least one vaccination, leaving just under 23,000 still unvaccinated.
The city reported Sunday that 84 percent of the NYPD had received at least one dose of the vaccine, up from 70 percent on Oct. 19. Three-quarters of the firefighters had received their first doses on Sunday, authorities said.
In the week and a half since Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the mandate, more than 22,000 city workers have received their first injection and vaccination rates have risen sharply at many city agencies. Most city agencies now have vaccination rates of 90 percent or more. But some are noticeably shorter. The Sanitation Department was at 82 percent on Sunday. At the Department of Correction, only 63 percent of employees were vaccinated, although correctional officers have an additional month to get vaccinated before the mandate takes effect.