September 14, 2021
WHEREAS, the COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted New York City and its economy, and is addressed effectively only by joint action of the City, State, and Federal governments; and
WHEREAS, the state of emergency to address the threat and impacts of COVID-19 in the City of New York first declared in Emergency Executive Order No. 98, and extended most recently by Emergency Executive Order No. 228, remains in effect; and
WHEREAS, additional reasons for requiring the measures continued in this Order are set forth in Emergency Executive Order No. 228;
NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to the powers vested in me by the laws of the State of New York and the City of New York, including but not limited to the New York Executive Law, the New York City Charter and the Administrative Code of the City of New York, and the common law authority to protect the public in the event of an emergency:
Section 1. I hereby direct that section 4 of Emergency Executive Order No. 228, dated August 25, 2021 and last extended by section 1 of Emergency Executive Order No. 237 shall be superseded in its entirety by the provisions of section 2 of this Order.
§ 2. a. The program set forth within this section shall be known as the “Key to NYC” program.
b. I hereby order that, except as provided in subdivision c of this section, a covered entity shall not permit a patron, full- or part-time employee, intern, volunteer, or contractor to enter a covered premises without displaying proof of vaccination and identification bearing the same identifying information as the proof of vaccination.
c. I hereby order that the following individuals are exempted from this section, and therefore may enter a covered premises without displaying proof of vaccination, provided that such individuals wear a face mask at all times when they are unable to maintain six (6) feet of distance from other individuals inside the covered premises:
d. I hereby direct each covered entity to develop and keep a written record describing the covered entity’s protocol for implementing and enforcing the requirements of this section. Such written record shall be available for inspection upon a request of a City official as allowed by law.
e. I hereby direct each covered entity to post a sign in a conspicuous place that is viewable by prospective patrons prior to entering the establishment. The sign must alert patrons to the vaccination requirement in this section and inform them that employees and patrons are required to be vaccinated. The Department for Health and Mental Hygiene (“DOHMH”) shall determine the text of such sign and provide a template on its website that a covered entity may use. A covered entity may use the sign available online at nyc.gov/keytoNYC, or use its own sign, provided its sign must be no smaller than 8.5 inches by 11 inches, with text provided by DOHMH in at least 14-point font.
f. For the purposes of this Order:
g. I hereby direct that each instance that a covered entity fails to check an individual’s vaccination status shall constitute a separate violation of this section.
h. I hereby direct the City’s Commission on Human Rights to publish guidance to assist covered entities in complying with this section in an equitable manner consistent with applicable provisions of the New York City Human Rights Law.
i. I hereby direct, in accordance with section 25 of the Executive Law, that staff from any agency as may hereafter be designated by the Commissioner of Health and Mental Hygiene shall enforce the directives set forth in this section.
j. (1) I hereby direct that any person or entity who is determined to have violated the requirements of the Key to NYC program shall be subject to a fine, penalty and forfeiture of not less than $1,000. If the person or entity is determined to have committed a subsequent violation of this section within twelve months of the initial violation for which a penalty was assessed, such person or entity shall be subject to a fine, penalty and forfeiture of not less than $2,000. For every violation thereafter, such person or entity shall be subject to a fine, penalty and forfeiture of not less than $5,000 if the person or entity committed the violation within twelve months of the violation for which the second penalty was assessed. This section may be enforced pursuant to sections 3.05, 3.07, or 3.11 of the Health Code and sections 558 and 562 of the Charter.
(2) I hereby suspend: (i) Appendix 7-A of Chapter 7 of Title 24 of the Rules of the City of New York to the extent it would limit a violation of this section to be punished with a standard penalty of $1,000 or a default penalty of $2,000; and (ii) section 7-08 of such Chapter 7 and section 3.11 of the Health Code, to the extent such provisions would limit the default penalty amount that may be imposed for a violation of this section to $2,000.
k. Covered entities shall comply with further guidelines issued by DOHMH to further the intent of this section and increase the number of vaccinated individuals in the City.
l. Section 20-1271 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York is modified by adding the following provision to the definition of “just cause:” Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter, a fast food employer shall be deemed to have just cause when a fast food employee has failed to provide proof of vaccination required by an emergency executive order issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and shall not be required to follow progressive discipline procedures prior to terminating the employee, provided that the employee shall have 30 days from the date when the employer notified the employee of the requirement to submit such proof and the employee shall be placed on leave following such notification until such proof is provided. This provision shall not excuse the employer from the responsibility to provide a reasonable accommodation where required by law.
§ 3. This Emergency Executive Order shall take effect immediately.
Bill de Blasio,