New York City’s vaccine mandate will have deadly consequences, according to New York City firefighters.
Due to staffing shortages expected from the absence of those who are suspended when the mandate kicks in next week, up to 20 percent of New York City’s fire companies and ambulances will be out of service, according to the New York Post.
New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio has ordered that all city workers have at least one dose of the vaccine by Monday. The unvaccinated will be suspended without pay.
12000 Municipal workers including FDNY, NYPD, SDNY and EMS marched across the Brooklyn Bridge today to protest the vaccine mandates.
— Scootercaster (@ScooterCasterNY) October 25, 2021
The Fire Department of New York estimated that 65 percent of firefighters, fire officers and EMS workers had been vaccinated, according to the Post.
“The Department must manage the unfortunate fact that a portion of our workforce has refused to comply with a vaccine mandate for all city employees,” Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said in a statement, the Post reported.
“We will use all means at our disposal, including mandatory overtime, mutual aid from other EMS providers and significant changes to the schedules of our members,” Nigro continued. “We will ensure the continuity of operations and safety of all those we have sworn oaths to serve.”
The Post quoted an FDNY firefighter it did not name as saying, “People will die in this city.”
Forcing firefighters to work overtime to deal with the shortage could have a boomerang effect, another firefighter told the Post.
“That means we’ll lose another 10 percent who get injured or sick from 80-hour workweeks,” the firefighter said.
An FDNY source speaking to the Post outlined why slower response times matter.
“With a heart attack, seven or eight minutes makes a big difference,” the source said. “And fires, an eight-minute difference is one bedroom or the whole house. Or in row houses, an eight-minute difference is one house or the whole block!
“This is no joke.”
FDNY Firefighter Association President Andrew Ansbro said the consequences will be severe.
“The mayor is going to be faced with either sending us home or sticking to his guns,” he said in a radio interview on the “Brian Kilmeade Show,” according to Fox News. “And his guns are going to get New York City residents killed… When this city goes into utter chaos on Nov. 1, be ready to pick up the pieces that the mayor causes.”
The effects are going to be apparent, he said.
“The staffing just is not there, there’s no way to do it,” he said. “The response times are going to go through the roof. We’re just not going to be able to get to the emergencies in time.”
“Fires are going to burn longer. Heart attack victims are going to be laying on the floor longer,” he said. “People in stuck elevators are going to be stuck there for hours if not days.”
His figures, which differed from the department’s numbers reported by the Post, estimated 45 percent of firefighters are not vaccinated and that the city could close 30 percent to 40 percent of the city’s firehouses.
“On Friday, when they’re tallying the numbers of who complied and who didn’t, they’re going to be faced with a stark reality that they’re going to have to close firehouses down,” he said.
“This is not a crisis,” he said. “Months ago, the mayor had his parade to say this is over. As far as we’re concerned, it’s over… Members need to have a choice to either get tested or vaccinated.”
Life is not a whole lot different over at the NYPD, where the Post reported that only 63 percent of patrol officers have been vaccinated, meaning 37 percent of the department could potentially be suspended under de Blasio’s policy.
“It’s an easy formula: Less cops equal more crime,” a Manhattan police officer told the Post.
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