New York City sent the fingerprints of unvaccinated public school teachers to the FBI, the educators allege in a lawsuit against the city government.
The city also flagged the teachers, whom the city fired for refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine, with a "problem code" that can affect their ability to get another job, Fox News reported.
"Fingerprints are sent with that flag to the FBI and the New York Criminal Justice Services, so it impacts their ongoing ability to get employment at other places," said John Bursch, a lawyer representing the teachers in their suit against the city.
Employees filed suit after New York City mayor Eric Adams (D.) announced on Feb. 6 that he is lifting the city’s COVID mandate. During the course of the mandate, 1,780 New York City employees, including those in the Department of Education, Department of Health, NYPD, and FDNY, lost their jobs for refusing the vaccine, according to the New York Post.
The city denied a religious exemption for one teacher who had worked for New York public schools for 15 years. "Religiously, mentally, I just didn't want anything experimental on my body, so what criminal activity does that persist?" she asked. "This is an invasion of privacy."
City employees fired for refusing the vaccine still have to reapply for jobs, without guarantee of their previous salaries or benefits.
Attorney James Mermigis joined the legal battle to prevent future mandates, arguing such policies are unconstitutional.
"So many employees were wrongfully terminated. [Mayor] Adams and his cronies blatantly violated New York City Human Rights Laws during the accommodation process," said Mermigis. "They cannot be let off the hook because he rescinds the mandate."