NEW YORK, NY – A New York Supreme Court judge struck down a statewide mandate requiring health care workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 on Friday, providing a major victory for a group of medical workers who had filed a lawsuit over the matter.
Judge Gerard Neri wrote in his decision that New York Governor Kathy Hochul and the state’s Department of Health had overstepped their authority by mandating a vaccine that is not included in state public health law, immediately rendering the decree “null, void, and of no effect.”
Neri also acknowledged that the vaccination mandate was unnecessary because the jab has been shown to be ineffective at stopping the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19 from person to person.
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“In true Orwellian fashion, the Respondents acknowledge then-current COVID-19 shots do not prevent transmission,” Neri said.
The Health Department is now considering a possible appeal in the wake of the judge’s ruling, although no concrete decision has been made as of yet.
“The requirement is a critical public health tool,” the agency said of the struck down vaccination mandate. “The State Health Department strongly disagrees with the judge’s decision and is exploring its options.”
The lawsuit had been filed by Medical Professionals for Informed Consent, a group comprised of medical workers who had been penalized by the state – either having been fired or having received threats – for refusing to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
“This is a huge win for New York healthcare workers, who have been deprived of their livelihoods for more than a year,” said Sujata Gibson, the plaintiffs’ lead attorney, in a statement. “This is also a huge win for all New Yorkers, who are facing dangerous and unprecedented healthcare worker shortages throughout New York State.”