September 27, 2021

Vaccine mandates: Judge temporarily blocks New York state from requiring COVID shots for health care workers

UTICA, N.Y. — A federal choose temporarily blocked the state of New York on Tuesday from forcing medical workers to be vaccinated after a gaggle of health care workers sued, saying their Constitutional rights had been violated as a result of the state’s mandate disallowed spiritual exemptions.

Judge David Hurd in Utica issued the order after 17 health professionals, together with medical doctors and nurses, claimed in a lawsuit Monday that their rights had been violated with a vaccine mandate that disallowed the exemptions.

The choose gave New York state till Sept. 22 to reply to the lawsuit in federal court docket in Utica. If the state opposes the plaintiffs’ request for a preliminary court docket order blocking the vaccine mandate, a Sept. 28 oral listening to will happen.

The state issued the order Aug. 28, requiring at the very least a primary shot for health care workers at hospitals and nursing houses by Sept. 27.

Hazel Crampton-Hays, press secretary to New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, stated in a press release that the state was contemplating all authorized choices.

“Governor Hochul is doing everything in her power to protect New Yorkers and combat the Delta variant by increasing vaccine rates across the State. Requiring vaccination of health care workers is critical to this battle,” Crampton-Hays stated.

Messages looking for remark additionally had been despatched to attorneys for the Thomas Extra Society who filed the lawsuit.

Dr. Joseph R. Sellers, president of the Medical Society of the State of New York, stated in a press release that the nonprofit group for physicians, residents and medical college students was “greatly dismayed by today’s decision.”

“We believe this step will result in a flurry of attempts to circumvent the well-reasoned vaccination requirement that was an important step towards reversing the recent surge attributable to the more easily spread Delta variant,” Sellers stated. “No major religious denomination opposes vaccinations, and the Supreme Court has for over 100 years upheld vaccination requirements as a means to protect the public health.”

Of their lawsuit, health care professionals disguised their identities with pseudonyms corresponding to “Dr. A.,” “Nurse A.,” and “Physician Liaison X.”

They cited violations of the U.S. Structure, together with the New York State Human Rights Legislation and New York Metropolis Human Rights Legislation, as a result of the state Division of Health regulation requiring workers to get the vaccine supplied no exemption for “sincere religious beliefs that compel the refusal of such vaccination.”

The court docket papers stated all the accessible vaccines make use of aborted fetus cell traces of their testing, growth or manufacturing. However spiritual leaders have disagreed over the difficulty and the Vatican issued a press release final yr saying the vaccines had been “morally acceptable.”

The lawsuit stated the plaintiffs needed to proceed anonymously as a result of they “run the risk of ostracization, threats of harm, immediate firing and other retaliatory consequences if their names become known.”

The plaintiffs, all Christians, included practising medical doctors, nurses, a nuclear medication technologist, a cognitive rehabilitation therapist and a doctor’s liaison who all oppose as a matter of non secular conviction any medical cooperation in abortion, the lawsuit stated.

It added that they aren’t “anti-vaxxers” who oppose all vaccines.