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GOP pols calling on NYC to lift vax mandate for parents at graduations

Republican lawmakers are demanding city health officials allow parents and other guests be allowed to attend public school graduation ceremonies without being forced to produce proof of the jab.

“To exclude parents from seeing this milestone in their children’s lives would be yet another unnecessary setback for them to have to suffer,” five GOP City Councilmembers wrote in a letter Thursday to Health Commissioner Ashwin Vasan and city Schools Chancellor David Banks.

“Some schools have planned graduation ceremonies as early as next week, and students, their parents and school faculty need to prepare accordingly.”

The lawmakers – which include Joann Ariola of Queens and Joseph Borelli of Staten Island – noted that Vasan confirmed at a May 18 budget hearing current rules forbid guests from attending graduations without proof of COVID-19 vaccination.

But Vasan insisted he was in “active discussions” with the Department of Education about the restrictions, the letter says.

“It has been three weeks since that hearing, and we have yet to hear any new information
regarding the restrictions on unvaccinated guests at graduations,” the pols wrote.

The lawmakers said excluding unvaccinated parents would be an “unnecessary setback for them to have to suffer.”
Stephen Yang
Vasan previously said he was in “active discussions” with the DOE about the graduation restrictions.
Vasan previously said he was in “active discussions” with the DOE about the graduation restrictions.
Gabriella Bass

Last month, the city lifted similar restrictions would have prohibited unvaccinated students from attending proms, the lawmakers noted in the letter.

Reps for the Health Department, Department of Education and Mayor’s Office did not immediately return messages.

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