NYC Mayor: Residents Should Prepare for Possibility of ‘Full Shutdown’

December 14, 2020 Updated: December 14, 2020

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said that despite a new vaccine having been made available to the most vulnerable in NYC, a full shutdown of the city may still be needed to control the spread of the CCP virus.

“The governor said in a New York Times interview over the weekend that we should prepare for the possibility of a full shutdown. I agree with that, we need to recognize that that may be coming, and we have got to get ready for that now because we cannot let this virus keep growing, especially at a moment where we are finally getting the vaccine and can turn the corner,” De Blasio said during a press conference Monday about New York City’s newly-initiated vaccination effort.

“So, I would say to you, I think December’s very tough, January’s tough. I think after that we get a chance to really come back strong.”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo confirmed on Friday all indoor dining in New York City will again be suspended indefinitely, prompted by a continual rise in CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus cases and hospitalizations throughout the city and state.

During a separate interview on Monday, de Blasio was asked if shutting down restaurants was really effective if they only contribute to 1.5 percent of the spread, to which De Blasio responded that they can’t go into people’s homes to see how many people are gathered, but shutting restaurants is something the government can control.

“We have to deal with the places where people gather and unfortunately with restaurants, they’re gathering indoors, and they’re gathering without face coverings on because you’re eating and drinking. … Unfortunately, this is just one of a number of steps that I think are going to be needed, there’s going to be more restrictions after this,” de Blasio, a Democrat, said.

People dine outside at a restaurant
People dine outside at a restaurant in the Brooklyn borough of New York City, N.Y., on Oct. 2, 2020. (Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images)
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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks during an appearance in New York City, N.Y., on May 4, 2020. (Bryan Thomas/Getty Images)

De Blasio emphasized that more shutdowns would be implemented to stop hospitals from becoming overwhelmed with CCP virus patients and control the spread until enough New Yorkers were vaccinated. The CCP virus causes the COVID-19 disease.

New York City health commissioner Dr. Dave A. Chokshi said it will take months to vaccinate enough people to stop the spread. “Good news, of course. But we must acknowledge that it is a slow and steady march,” he said.

New York State Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal, a Democrat, introduced a bill on Dec. 4 that would require a “COVID-19 vaccine to be administered in accordance with the department of health’s COVID-19 vaccination administration program and mandates vaccination in certain situations.”

Every New Yorker, except those medically exempt, would be required to receive the vaccine if the state’s vaccination efforts do not achieve “sufficient immunity from COVID-19.”

Rosenthal told WGRZ-TV the bill was “a protective health measure” that would “ensure that our residents are safe and protected against the further spread.”

But in an event where not enough people get vaccinated to reach herd immunity, “the department of health of the state can then say that we need people to get the vaccination.” Rosenthal explained that an estimated 75 percent to 80 percent of the population would need to be vaccinated in order to achieve herd immunity.

Meiling Lee contributed to this report.