Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Thursday announced the New York State Department of Labor is issuing guidance to all employers that any necessary recovery period from the COVID-19 vaccine is covered under the state's Paid Sick Leave Law.
According to a recent survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, among unvaccinated Americans, 48% say they are concerned they "might need to miss work if the side effects of the vaccine make them feel sick for a day or more." This group includes nearly two-thirds (64%) of unvaccinated Hispanic adults and over half of Black adults (55%).
"The vaccine is the key to defeating COVID for good and we are doing everything we can to remove any and all barriers to getting shots in arms," Cuomo said. "Despite the side effects of vaccine being extremely limited, some studies have shown that there are individuals avoiding their shot out of fear of missing work the next day. I want to be crystal clear – no New Yorker will miss a day's pay because of getting the vaccine. The Department of Labor will be issuing guidance to all employers reminding them that, in the unlikely event someone needs time off after experiencing side effects, by law, that is considered a paid sick leave day. We have COVID on the ropes and we cannot give up now. The vaccine is safe, effective and available – and the sooner everyone takes it, the sooner we can put the pandemic behind us and move forward into a brighter future."
On March 12, Cuomo signed legislation granting public and private employees time off to receive the COVID-19 vaccination. Under this new law, employees will be granted up to four hours of excused leave per injection that will not be charged against any other leave the employee has earned or accrued.