MTA and PANYNJ New York employees are required to be vaccinated

Aug. 3, 2021
MTA will reopen employee-only vaccination sites and nine additional sites for New York state employees will open.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) employees working in New York facilities must be vaccinated by Labor Day or be tested weekly. The vaccine mandate for transit workers in New York City follows the governor’s July 28 announcement that all state employees and patient-facing employees in state-run hospitals would be required to be vaccinated or undergo weekly testing.

“Everybody is talking about mask policies right now, but I don't believe a mask policy is going to be enough - we need to talk about a vaccination policy," Gov. Cuomo said. "We've taken the first step by mandating that all state employees get the vaccine or get tested weekly, and we're expanding on that by requiring all MTA and Port Authority workers to do so, as well. The state is leading the way, but local governments, schools, public hospitals and even businesses should start considering mandatory vaccinations as well because if these numbers start to rise quickly, we can't afford to go backward and lose the progress we've already made."

MTA will reopen employee-only vaccination sites that had closed due to a drop off in usage; those that remain open will continue to operate. Gov. Cuomo said nine new vaccination sites will open near areas with a high concentration of state employees.

"The MTA has no higher priority than the health and safety of our workforce. This new vaccine and testing mandate is being introduced to make sure our employees are as protected as possible against the Delta variant as the region's recovery picks up speed,” said Acting MTA Chairman and CEO Janno Lieber. “To date, nearly 70 percent of our workforce has already been vaccinated - including some who got their doses in their home neighborhoods at pharmacies and other local sites. It's great progress but we can and must do better in the interest of public health and safety."

PANYNJ Executive Director Rick Cotton said, "Throughout the pandemic, the Port Authority has taken a multitude of actions to implement health and safety protocols that protect travelers and employees. We have always looked to the states for guidance and that's what we are doing now. The Port Authority will be redoubling our efforts to get employees vaccinated and we will be carefully consulting with leaders of all Port Authority unions on implementation plans for the weekly testing program."

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Group Editorial Director

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine and group editorial director of the Infrastructure and Aviation Group at Endeavor Business Media. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the editorial direction of the group and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.