Statement from Borough President Vito Fossella on overturned decision of Staten Island firefighter’s termination regarding COVID-19 vaccine . The termination was despite an application for a religious exemption, for which both the NYPD and NYFD rejected almost all applications, only allowing
We want to commend Supreme Court Justice Ralph Porzio for overruling the city’s actions of terminating Staten Island firefighter Timothy Rivicci who lost his job for refusing to get the COVID-19 vaccine. We also want to thank the Uniformed Firefighters Association for their support of their workers and this decision. Lifting these arduous vaccine restrictions is imperative to bringing life back to the five boroughs of New York City. It’s time to remove all mandates so people can return to their jobs while they preserve their freedom of choice.
The last couple of years have been a challenge for everyone. Recently, the Police Benevolent Association supported the decision which overturned the ‘vaccinate to work’ policy for New York City Police Officers. As we move forward from the pandemic, we would like to see all city workers reinstated and return to their previously held positions. We are pleased that Firefighter Rivicci will be able to return full-time to Engine 158 continuing to serve the people of Staten Island and provide safety for the borough’s communities.
Regarding this decision, Judge Porzio wrote:
“Hindsight is a powerful tool. The pandemic today is not what it was a year, or even two years ago. Being vaccinated does not prevent an individual from contracting or transmitting COVID-19 … guidelines regarding quarantine and isolation are the same for vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals.”
“This is not a commentary on the efficacy of vaccination, but about how we are treating our first responders, the ones who worked day-to-day through the height of the pandemic. They deserve better.”
The Post reported previously that out of 1,960 FDNY exemption applications, only 15 medical and five religious exemptions were approved.
Banner Image: NYFD truck. Image Credit – Aubin Kirch