You are reading

Queens Lawmaker Vickie Paladino Given Vaccine Waiver to Take Seat in NYC Council Chamber

Council Member Vickie Paladino, pictured, took her seat at City Hall Thursday after receiving a waiver from the city council’s vaccination mandate (Photo via Twitter)

Jan. 21, 2022 By Michael Dorgan

Queens Council Member Vickie Paladino took her seat at City Hall Thursday after receiving a waiver from the city council’s vaccination mandate.

Paladino, who is an outspoken critic of vaccine mandates, was given an exemption from the rule and provided a negative coronavirus test to enter the council chamber, according to a spokesperson.

“Council Member Paladino was granted a waiver and will be allowed access to the chamber with a negative COVID test,” her spokesperson Robert Hornak said in a statement. “Our understanding is the waiver is indefinite.”

Up until yesterday, the newly elected Republican lawmaker had been denied entry to the Council Chamber for refusing to show proof of vaccination and had been participating in council proceedings remotely via a video linkup.

Council members are required to be immunized against COVID-19 under a council policy implemented in the fall, according to a spokesperson for Council Speaker Adrienne Adams.

That policy remains in place under the new council that took office earlier this month, the spokesperson said, adding that “employees are entitled by law to seek accommodations to the vaccine mandate based on medical or religious concerns.”

It is unclear whether Paladino has been vaccinated since she has refused to publicly reveal her immunization status. Earlier this month she likened the city’s mandates to Nazi Germany in an interview with NY1 News. She later walked the comments back and apologized.

“The council member believes that this is a matter of personal medical privacy and that nobody should be forced to disclose their medical information publicly,” Hornak said.

Paladino will be required to present a negative COVID-19 test within seven days of attending any council meeting or hearing, according to reports.

She was seen wearing a black-colored mask inside the council chamber yesterday while the new committee chairs were announced. She posted a picture of herself to Twitter not wearing a mask before proceedings got underway.

“My first day in council chambers for a scheduled session,” Paladino captioned the picture.

“Thank you to Speaker Adams for all your help, and I look forward to a productive and successful term!”

Paladino won the District 19 seat representing Whitestone, College Point, Bayside, Little Neck, Douglaston and parts of North Flushing in November and succeeded Democratic Council Member Paul Vallone.

She narrowly defeated Democrat Tony Avella, who represented the same district in the council from 2002 to 2009.

Council Member Vickie Paladino, pictured, took her seat at City Hall Thursday after receiving a waiver from the city council’s vaccination mandate (Photo by Emil Cohen/NYC Council Media Unit)

email the author: news@queenspost.com

2 Comments

Click for Comments 

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.


The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Mob of young people ransack Flushing boutique minutes after robbing man at knifepoint on Roosevelt Avenue: NYPD

Police from the 109th Precinct in Flushing are still looking for more than a dozen young people who allegedly robbed a man at knifepoint on Roosevelt Avenue and then pulled a smash-and-grab minutes later, looting a store of tens of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise last month.

The mob of more than a dozen men and women surrounded a 38-year-old man in the vicinity of Roosevelt Avenue and Union Street in the early morning of Monday, April 22. Several of the suspects threatened the victim with knives and some of the individuals menaced him with sticks before they forcibly removed his wallet, which contained $700 in cash, police said, adding that the victim was not injured during the incident.

South Richmond Hill man busted for allegedly groping woman on board bus near Forest Park: NYPD

A South Richmond Hill man was arrested on Monday and booked at the 102nd Precinct in Richmond Hill for groping a woman on a bus near the eastern edge of Forest Park earlier this month.

Edwin Guzman, 38, of 112th Street, is accused of approaching a 26-year-old victim who was on board an MTA Q37 bus near the intersection of Park Lane South and Metropolitan Avenue on the morning of Wednesday, May 1.

Mayor announces new 9/11 memorial will be built in Whitestone to honor fallen service members from Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts

Queens will be home to the city’s new memorial dedicated to the 99 service members from the borough who lost their lives in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq following the events of 9/11, Mayor Eric Adams announced during a Fleet Week kickoff reception at City Hall on Thursday morning.

The borough of Queens was chosen because it is home to the largest number of post-9/11 service members who were killed in action during those conflicts. Queens is also home to the highest population of living veterans than any other borough.

Two men sentenced to life imprisonment in murder-for-hire of perceived business rival at Flushing karaoke club

The president of a Manhattan-based construction company and a California man were sentenced to life in prison in Brooklyn federal court on Wednesday for orchestrating the murder of a businessman at a Flushing karaoke bar in 2019.

Qing Ming “Allen” Yu, 55, of Oyster Bay, and Zhe “Zack” Zhang, 35, of Arcadia, Calif., were convicted by a federal jury in October following a two-week trial for the contract killing of 31-year-old Xin “Chris” Gu, who worked at Yu’s company before becoming his business rival. The jury found the defendants guilty of murder-for-hire and murder-for-hire conspiracy for hiring a hitman to gun the victim down outside the Grand Slam KTV bar on Fowler Avenue