The “Key to NYC” program is Mayor Bill de Blasio first-in-nation vaccination mandate for workers and customers. The mandate will take effect on December 27, 2021 and will apply to private sector workers across industries which results in approximately 184,000 businesses in New York City.
- August 17, 2021 – mandates employees and customers 12 years and older to provide proof of vaccination before entering businesses conducting the following activities:
- Indoor dining
- Indoor fitness
- Indoor entertainment
- December 14, 2021 – mandates children ages 5 to 11 years to show proof of at least one vaccination dose for access to such venues
- December 27, 2021 – children and adults ages 12 years and older will be required to be fully immunized and show proof of two vaccine doses, instead of one, except for those who have received the Johnson & Johnson one-dose vaccine.
How to Comply
Before December 27th – one dose of any vaccine approved for emergency use or fully approved by either the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the World Health Organization (WHO) will meet the vaccination mandate. This includes Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson.
December 27 & onwards – program will require two vaccine doses for New Yorkers 12 years and older instead of one, except for those who have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
To comply with New York City regulations, you must showacceptable proof of vaccination. This can range from a CDC issued vaccination card, the New York State Excelsior Pass, the Clear Health Pass, and the NYC COVID Safe App.
If you are living in NYC, you will most likely encounter requests to show proof of vaccination. checks. There are, however, some exceptions that are not covered by the mandate. This includes residential and office buildings, dining where food is consumed offsite or outdoors only, or entering a building for a minimum amount of time required for a limited purpose. For instance, you may be able to be unvaccinated and live normally if you stay in your apartment complex, only order fast food or use delivery services and participate in outdoor activities. Just be sure to avoid indoor dining, fitness, recreation and entertainment. Mayor Bill de Blasio has followed CDCs guidance which states COVID-19 spreads more easily indoors than outdoors. Studies show that people are more likely to be exposed to COVID-19 when they are closer than 6 feet apart from others for longer periods of time. The mayor is doing his best to implement these guidelines in his home – New York City.
Mayor Bill de Blasio is expected to issue additional enforcement and reasonable accommodation guidance by December 15, 2021, as well as provide additional resources to help small businesses with implementation. New York City has administered over 12.5 million vaccination doses; this number continues to grow as vaccine mandates become stricter.