New York City Mayor Eric Adams has announced that the city’s vaccine mandate will come to an end on March 7th of this year. There is, however, a catch. The mandate will not end for every business and/or employee. Certain businesses are able to maintain their direct mandates on employees. New York City is also maintaining its mandate on its employees. This includes the 1,430 city workers who were fired just a few days ago. The vaccine mandate is ending for very specific areas including indoor dining, fitness (gyms), and entertainment venues.
NYC has a very convoluted set of rules and regulations when it comes to its vaccine mandate. The most perplexing one is about the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Although this qualifies as an entertainment venue, they are not fully free from vaccine mandates. The Brooklyn Nets basketball team plays at the Barclays. The new rule, or lack thereof, now allows for unvaccinated fans to come and spectate the game. The prior rule stated that unvaccinated players from the away team could come and play at the game. Confused yet? Well, here’s another detail. Home players are still barred from playing NBA basketball games at Barclays Center.
This means superstar Nets player Kyrie Irving is still unable to play home games for the Brooklyn Nets. If he lived in New Jersey or elsewhere then he may be able to temporarily fly into the city to play games and return home just like away players. But because he lives and works in New York City, then he cannot play for the Nets while unvaccinated. The reason for this ridiculous mess of a rule has nothing at all to do with science. Well, maybe it has something to do with political science. Or social science. But not health science. This is all about optics and legalities.
If Eric Adams allows Kyrie Irving to play home games while unvaccinated then the message he sends to the 1,430 fired city workers is that they don’t matter. There is also the possibility for a Pandora’s Box of lawsuits to pop up. As they should. Why would a star basketball player get preferential treatment over an employee for the NYC Department of Education? Everyone should be allowed to work… not just star athletes. The mandate may stay in place for city workers simply because of the fact that the decision was already made to fire them weeks ago. Optics… not science.
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