BOSTON (WHDH) - Boston Mayor Kim Janey on Thursday reminded the public that the pandemic is not over, announcing that her administration is mulling a vaccine mandate for city employees amid the recent uptick in COVID-19 activity fueled by the highly contagious Delta variant.
“After months of extremely low and declining cases, we have seen a marked increase in COVID activity in Boston over the last several weeks,” Janey said during a news conference at City Hall.
Janey noted that the majority of people affected by the resurgence of the coronavirus is those between the ages of 20 and 39. She added that the city’s positivity rate currently stands at 2.7 percent.
As of July 27, there were 704 new confirmed cases reported in the last two weeks, compared to just 147 new cases during the previous two-week period. They seven-day average for new hospitalizations has also jumped from 26 to 36.
“Let me be clear, the pandemic is not over. We are still living with COVID-19 and we must do all we can to keep ourselves, our families, and our community safe,” Janey said.
Janey emphasized that vaccines are the “best way” for Boston to prevent the uptick from worsening.
While more than 400,000 Bostonians have been fully vaccinated and 66 percent of residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine, Janey announced that she hopes to have every city employee vaccinated as well.
“With cases on the rise and the Delta variant now the dominant strain in Boston, I believe this is the best path forward,” Janey said. “If it takes a mandate to keep the city of Boston employees safe, that is what we’ll do, with very thoughtful, worker-centered approaches.”
As of right now, vaccines are not yet required for city employees.
Janey also urged all unvaccinated residents to step up and get the shot before the virus mutates again.
“There is still more work to do. The COVID Delta variant presents a new threat to those who remain unvaccinated,” Janey said. “The longer we linger with large numbers of unvaccinated residents, the more opportunity there is for the COVID virus to mutate again and prolong this pandemic.”
Janey reminded the public that masks are required inside municipal buildings, schools, libraries, and community centers.
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