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Majority of New Yorkers support vax mandate for school teachers, staff: poll


ALBANY — A majority of New Yorkers support mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirements for teachers and other school employees, as well as indoor mask mandates, according to a new poll.

Sixty nine percent of registered voters agree that public school teachers and staff should be required to get the vaccine compared to 26 percent of those opposed, according to the new survey by Siena College released Tuesday.

The notion has even higher support in New York City — 72 percent — followed by a 71 percent support among suburbanites and 65 percent of upstate voters.

Eighty three percent of Democrats back the mandate, along with 55 percent of Republicans and 59 percent of Independent voters. 

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has mandated all city Department of Education employees get the shot or face termination — a move opposed by the powerful teachers union — but workers may apply for medical or religious exemptions. 

School districts outside the five boroughs can offer a little more flexibility, instructing employees to get the jab or opt to submit to weekly coronavirus tests, according to the state Health Department. 

Students arrive for in-person classes outside Public School 188 The Island School.
Students arrive for in-person classes outside Public School 188 The Island School.
AP

Meanwhile, New Yorkers are also on board with vaccine requirements in other sectors — 66 percent support businesses like restaurants and gyms requiring customers to show proof of vaccination status upon entry. Thirty one percent oppose the idea. 

Another 65 percent agree that employers should require their employees to get vaccinated, whereas 31 percent are not on board. 

The analysis comes on the heels of last week’s order from President Joe Biden that all federal employees, private businesses with 100 workers or more, healthcare workers and teachers must get the drug.

“Three different vaccine mandates – employees generally, school employees specifically and customers of certain businesses – each has the support of at least 65 percent of voters,” pollster Steve Greenberg said.

Students are greeted as they arrive at PS 811 in New York.
Students are greeted as they arrive at PS 811 in New York.
AP

“Each has support from more than three-quarters of Democrats and a majority of independents. Although a majority of Republicans support two of the mandates, they are divided on employers mandating their employees,” he added. 

Some 78 percent of Empire State denizens agree with the state’s policy mandating all school districts require masks for teachers, staff and students, compared to 18 percent who disagree, according to the poll. 

Another 74 percent approve of government requiring masks in all indoor public facilities, while 21 percent are against the measure. 

The poll surveyed 700 voters and was conducted Sept. 7th to the 12th, with a plus/minus 4.2 percentage point margin of error. 



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