Published On: February 16, 2022

This evening, the Massachusetts Appeals Court granted an injunction prohibiting the City of Boston from enforcing its December 20, 2021vaccine mandate policy. We anticipate that many members have questions about what impact, if any, the Judge’s decision has on the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) regarding vaccination that the BTU tentatively entered into last week. We have reviewed the injunction with counsel and do not expect it to impact the current status of our educators, but we understand and support the School Committee wanting to review the injunction themselves before proceeding.

Article 18 of the MOA contemplated this possibility. This section provides that if the Appeals Court did not lift the stay of the Vaccine mandate, then our MOA would not go into effect. Consequently, as the Appeals Court did not lift the stay, the MOA would not presently be in effect. The City/BPS has confirmed that this is also their understanding of the relevant language.

The BTU will continue to closely monitor this situation as it is possible that the City will appeal this determination and a higher court could still rule against the plaintiffs. No changes to our members status will be made prior to such a decision being issued. In addition, by the time that happens, if it does at all, it is likely that City will no longer be in the “Red Zone” that requires unvaccinated people to be put on unpaid leave. We had anticipated that we would be likely out of the “Red Zone” after the February break as well. In the meantime, we will continue to focus our energy and time on our master contract negotiations.

Our current position continues to promote both public health and equity while also preserving staffing for our schools by preventing educator terminations.

In solidarity,
President Tang on behalf of BTU Officers & Staff

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