MIDDLETOWN, NY – Senator Mike Martucci (R,C,I-Hudson Valley/Catskills) released the following statement in response to Governor Hochul’s plan to address the State’s impending healthcare staffing shortage:
“As Yogi Berra once said, ‘It’s like déjà vu all over again.’ Like her former boss, disgraced Governor Andrew Cuomo, Governor Hochul is set to declare a State of Emergency to allow her to circumvent our Constitution. The worst part is that it’s to address a crisis of her own making.
“Shortly after he announced he would resign from office, Governor Cuomo declared that all healthcare workers must be vaccinated by September 28th. Hochul was warned about the healthcare shortage this would create soon after. I signed a letter along with my colleagues in the Republican Conference pointing this out and asking her to allow a testing option for these workers. She ignored us and doubled down on mandated vaccination for healthcare workers instead. Now the shortages I predicted are coming to pass, and with unions challenging her blatant refusal to bargain in good faith in court, she is declaring an “emergency”.
“What will this allow her to do? She wants to bring in workers from other states – not licensed to practice in New York – and has also asked the Biden Administration to allow emergency approval for visas for healthcare workers to come to this country. In short, Hochul put thousands of New Yorkers out of work and now wants to replace them with people from out of state and even immigrants from overseas whose vaccination statuses are unknown.
“While I am vaccinated and I support vaccination, this is an outrageous abuse of power and an abandonment of New York’s own healthcare heroes who have been on the frontlines throughout this pandemic. I want to be clear – I stand with New York healthcare workers in this fight. All Governor Hochul needs to do to fix this is allow for a testing option for those who choose not to be vaccinated. If she will not do so, the Legislature should return to session immediately and solve this problem for her. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Governor Hochul had a front row seat to Andrew Cuomo’s lies, manipulation, bullying and abuses of power. She says she wants to set a new tone. Well, this is her big chance. The eyes of hardworking New Yorkers are upon her.”