Taking a cue from the recent announcements made by California and New York City, San Antonio Bexar County hinted at replicating a mandate that would ensure that all their government personnel are vaccinated, or at least submit their weekly virus tests.
In a joint statement, San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff expressed support for the drastic move that was made by California and New York City and said that several steps are currently being considered in their respective jurisdictions as American states are recording an increased number of new infections with the emergence of a mutated COVID-19 strain aptly referred to as Delta variant.
“We are supportive of the efforts of New York and California. We will be reviewing the legalities and practicalities of requiring a COVID-19 vaccine and/or weekly testing in conformity with CDC guidelines in order to protect the health and well-being of the city/county workforce,” the joint statement read.
The statement came as an offshoot of increased COVID-19 contamination and hospital admissions due to the Delta variant deemed as 60 percent more vicious than its previous forms.
Aside from California and New York City, the Department of Veteran Affairs also made a similar announcement of a policy designed to make DVA as the first federal agency to mandate the vaccine or tests.
Interestingly, Nirenberg and Wolff are aware that their stance does not conform with that of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who earlier banned state agencies and companies contracting with the state from requiring proof of vaccination from its customers.
“Texas is open 100%, and we want to make sure you have the freedom to go where you want without limits. Vaccine passports are now prohibited in the Lone Star State,” Abbott said moments after signing the law.
The surge in the daily tallies of fresh local COVID-19 infections pushed officials to alter their operations.
For one, District 9 Councilman John Courage said that the working arrangement in his office would again be going virtual — “This was not an easy decision, but I need to do everything possible to stop the spread and lower the risk to our community,” his statement read.
To date, persons aged 19 to 39 account for the biggest backlog in the government vaccination efforts, as compared to older residents. Relatedly, more than 60% of people aged 40 and above have already been fully vaccinated, while less than half of those 39 and below have received the required two doses for immunity against COVID-19, as per local data.
Wolff earlier said that up to 97% of the patients battling the virus in the hospital are unvaccinated.
“For those that chose not to get vaccinated, I would hope that (the hospitalizations) would send a clear message to everybody. You better go get your vaccination. It’s a little late to ask for the vaccination when you’re fixing to go on a ventilator,” Wolff quipped.