New York Issues Ultimatum to Businesses: Check Patrons’ Vaccination Status or Require Masks

A patient receives a card showing when they received their first dose of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine at the Amazon Meeting Center in downtown Seattle, Washington on January 24, 2021. - Amazon is partnering with Virginia Mason for a one-day pop-up clinic on January 24. 2021 that aims to vaccinate …
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Democrat New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) announced on Friday that she is forcing businesses to either check vaccination status of patrons or implement a sweeping mask requirement.

Beginning December 13, New York will require businesses to either implement vaccine requirements or force businesses to mandate masks. According to the governor’s website, this addresses the “winter surge”:

This determination is based on the State’s weekly seven-day case rate as well as increasing hospitalizations. The new business and venue requirements extend to both patrons and staff. This measure is effective Dec. 13, 2021 until Jan. 15, 2022, after which the State will re-evaluate based on current conditions. The new measure brings added layers of mitigation during the holidays when more time is spent indoors shopping, gathering, and visiting holiday-themed destinations.

“As Governor, my two top priorities are to protect the health of New Yorkers and to protect the health of our economy. The temporary measures I am taking today will help accomplish this through the holiday season,” she claimed.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul in New York City (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

“We shouldn’t have reached the point where we are confronted with a winter surge, especially with the vaccine at our disposal, and I share many New Yorkers’ frustration that we are not past this pandemic yet,” she continued, blaming the current situation on the unvaccinated while mildly scolding them.

“I want to thank the more than 80 percent of New Yorkers who have done the right thing to get fully vaccinated. If others will follow suit, these measures will no longer be necessary,” she said.

“I have warned for weeks that additional steps could be necessary, and now we are at that point based upon three metrics: Increasing cases, reduced hospital capacity, and insufficient vaccination rates in certain areas,” she added.

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