Sotomayor declines to block NYC public sector Covid-19 vaccine mandate


Justice Sonia Sotomayor on Thursday rejected a request that the Supreme Court block New York City’s public sector Covid-19 vaccine requirement as it applies to employees with who have religious objections to the vaccine.

The emergency application from the New Yorkers for Religious Liberty was filed with Sotomayor, who supervises the lower courts that have ruled in the case.

Her order rejecting it did not indicate that she had put the matter before the full court.

The challengers argued that they have been forced to choose between the mandate and their public sector jobs. Plaintiffs include firefighters, teachers, and police officers. They say that the city has set up a process for individualized exemptions but still denies most exceptions based on religious liberty concerns.

“President Biden’s pronouncement that the pandemic is over has done little to reverse the ongoing constitutional nightmare in New York City,” John Bursch, a lawyer for the challengers, argued.

“Moreover, it has been widely reported that a ‘tripandemic’ may loom ahead this winter, greatly increasing the likelihood that the Mandates will remain in place or new ones will replace them,” he argued.

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