NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — City officials in New Haven will continue their efforts to reduce the number of COVID-19 cases even if statewide mandates expire in the coming months.
Mayor Justin Elicker announced several new measures Tuesday that will impact everyone who lives or works in the Elm City.
Elicker said New Haven is in a good place right now as the number of cases continues to drop, but he warns the city is not out of the woods just yet and he has no plans to drop the citywide mask mandate regardless of whether statewide mandates expire next month.
Gov. Ned Lamont is asking the state legislature to continue Connecticut’s pandemic emergency declarations so the federal funding continues to flow. He also wants lawmakers to vote on limited COVID-19-related executive orders, all as the start of the 2022 legislative session approaches.
Health leaders joined the mayor at a media briefing Tuesday to announce several new measures.
Among them is a new mandate that falls in line with CDC recommendations, requiring all city employees need to be fully vaccinated with a booster shot or submit to weekly COVID-19 testing.
Employees will have two weeks to comply, then the health department will have several weeks to confirm those submissions. The deadline for the booster requirement is March 4.
Elicker also doubled down on the effectiveness of the city-wide indoor mask mandate, which will continue in public places, businesses, and city schools.
“We’re not in the clear, right, the cases are going down, but we’re still seeing a significant number of cases,” Elicker said. “So the health side is very, very important to us to, in particular, keep the vulnerable residents safe, having access to any resource they need.”
The mayor also thanked city workers for complying with measures currently in place. Right now, more than 81% of city workers, excluding public school employees, are fully vaccinated. That includes 66% of the police force and 79% of the New Haven Fire Department.
Elicker said he is hopeful those percentages will rise in the coming weeks.