Saying Boston Mayor Michelle Wu’s decision to unilaterally amend a COVID-19 vaccine policy for city employees was a “nondelegable policy decision” tied to public safety, the high court of Massachusetts has reversed an appellate court judge who’d imposed a preliminary injunction against the policy change with regard to three unions.

“Given the unique circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic and its threat to the health and safety of the public, the decision [in December 2021] to remove the testing alternative in the defendants’ COVID-19 policy constituted a nondelegable policy decision that could not be the subject of [collective union] decision bargaining because any such requirement would have impinged directly on the defendants’ ability to provide essential public safety services to city residents,” the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court wrote.

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