New York State Responds to Vaccination Mandate Lawsuit Against Medical Workers

ALBANY, NY (NEWS10) – The state just met the Wednesday evening 5 p.m. deadline, submitting a response to the lawsuit against its vaccination mandate for healthcare workers.

The New York State Attorney General’s Office filed documents in federal court in Utica. A judge had issued a temporary restraining order on the execution of the warrant because it did not include religious exemptions.

The state released a 22-page response to the lawsuit on Wednesday.

The report argues that providing a religious exemption for a COVID-19 vaccine would be inconsistent with previous regulations for medical workers.

The AG’s office says no religious exemptions have been offered to hospital workers and other healthcare facility employees for other vaccines, including the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine.

They say vaccinations are necessary for healthcare workers because they tend to work with patients who are at greater risk of serious illness from COVID-19 or who might not be vaccinated for health reasons.

Opponents of the requirement have said it drives more people out of the medical field and could lead to labor shortages.

“The vast majority of these healthcare workers were seen as heroes. They risked their lives and now 30 to 35 percent of people are threatened with dismissal,” said Corey Willig, Buffalo attorney at HoganWillig.

The state also pointed out that more than 50 medical professional societies and organizations, including the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, have called on all healthcare employers to require vaccinations for their workers.

The mandate was to come into effect on Monday, September 27. However, the application is on hold while the case progresses through the courts.

The judge will rule on a preliminary injunction before the temporary restraining order expires on October 12.

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