The US Supreme Court announced that it will review a legal challenge to New York City’s vaccine mandate from a group of public school teachers, less than a week after Justice Sonia Sotomayor rejected the appeal.
The appeal was filed last week by 15 Department of Education workers who alleged the city was violating their religious freedom by not accepting their vaccine exemption petitions.
The teachers had previously requested that Sotomayor — who has jurisdiction over lower courts in New York — consider their emergency request, and the liberal justice denied the request without referring the matter to the full court, CNN reported.
But the Big Apple teachers made a new request to Justice Neil Gorsuch, a conservative appointed by former President Donald Trump, who made the decision to allow the court to consider the challenge, according to CNN.
The justices will reportedly consider the appeal early next month, despite the plaintiffs’ ask for a decision this week.
Sotomayor had rejected the emergency appeal from the teachers Friday, the same day as the deadline for city employees to comply with the mandate or face losing their jobs.
More than 1,400 government workers were let go due to refusal to get vaccinated.
The appeal came after several legal objections to former Mayor Bill de Blasio’s vaccination mandate for teachers had been struck down.
Staff at Big Apple public schools have been subject to a vaccine mandate since late September, and all municipal employees have been required to get inoculated against the virus since November.
The Supreme Court has generally upheld COVID-19 vaccine mandates instituted by local governments.
In August, Justice Amy Coney Barrett denied a request by eight Indiana University students to block the school’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate from taking effect.
n December, the Supreme Court let stand New York State’s edict requiring health care workers to get vaccinated for COVID-19 without offering an exemption from the mandate for religious reasons.
But last month, the Supreme Court barred the Biden administration from enforcing a requirement that employees at large businesses be vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing.