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State asks police, fire departments, transit workers & teachers unions to handle vaccinating employees

Less than half of nursing homes statewide have given their residents the first COVID-19 vaccination. The state is now pressuring them to speed it up.

News 12 Staff

Jan 6, 2021, 3:20 AM

Updated 1,259 days ago

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To lessen the burden on hospitals, urgent cares, pharmacies and other places that will administer COVID-19 vaccines to the public, the state is asking police and fire departments, transit workers and teachers unions if they can handle vaccinating their own employees.
The teachers union in the Hudson Valley says it is perplexed as it doesn't have partnerships with health providers.
Samantha Rosado-Ciriello, president of the Yonkers Federation of Teachers, is unsure what her team can do.
"We don't have a health division or a health network that we typically work with," she says. She says they also don't have staff with medical backgrounds who can vaccinate everyone.
"We don't really know at this point what the governor really means or what he's looking for," she says. Anthony Nicodemo, the president of Greenburgh-North Castle United, tells News 12 he thinks this is too big of an undertaking for school districts - that perhaps an appointment system needs to be structured by local, state and federal officials.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said no one will be forced to take this on if they can't.
"If a police department doesn't have the capacity to do it, fine. A fire department doesn't have the capacity to do it, fine. If a teachers union doesn't have a local health provider, then fine," he said.
It's unclear who would be responsible for safely storing the vials, which must be kept in certain temperatures or if these groups will also be given deadlines for administering their shots.
News 12 reached out to the governor's team and is waiting to hear back.


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