UPDATE, 10:00 a.m.: A far more detailed list of the Phase 1B eligibility criteria has been published by the state, and is as follows:

  • Individuals Age 75 and older
  • First Responder and Support Staff for First Responder Agency
    • Fire Service
      • State Fire Service, including firefighters and investigators (professional and volunteer)
      • Local Fire Services, including firefighters and investigators (professional and volunteer)
    • Police and Investigations
      • State Police, including Troopers
      • State Park Police, DEC Police, Forest Rangers
      • SUNY Police
      • Sheriffs’ Offices
      • County Police Departments and Police Districts
      • City, Town, and Village Police Departments
      • Transit of other Public Authority Police Departments
      • State Field Investigations, including Department of Motor Vehicles, State Commission of Correction, Justice Center, Department of Financial Services, Inspector General, Department of Tax and Finance, Office of Children and Family Services and State Liquor Authority
    • Public Safety Communications
      • Emergency Communication and Public Safety Answering Point Personnel, including dispatchers and technicians
    • Other Sworn and Civilian Personnel
      • Court Officers
      • Other Police or Peace Officers
      • Support of Civilian Staff for Any of the above services, agencies, or facilities
  • Corrections
    • State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision Personnel, including correction and parole officers
    • Local Correctional Facilities, including correction officers
    • Local Probation Departments, including probation officers
    • State Juvenile Detention and Rehabilitation Facilities
    • Local Juvenile Detention and Rehabilitation Facilities
  • P-12 Schools
    • P-12 school or school district faculty or staff (includes all teachers, substitute teachers, student teachers, school administrators, paraprofessional staff and support staff including bus drivers)
    • Contractors working in a P-12 school or school district (including contracted bus drivers)
    • Licensed, registered, approved or legally exempt group Childcare
    • Licensed, registered, approved or legally exempt group Childcare Providers
  • Employees or Support Staff of Licensed or Registered Childcare Setting
  • Licensed, Registered, Approved or Legally Exempt Childcare Providers
  • Public Transit
    • Airline and airport employees
    • Passenger railroad employees
    • Subway and mass transit employees (i.e., MTA, LIRR, Metro North, NYC Transit, Upstate transit)
    • Ferry employees
    • Port Authority employee
    • Public bus employee
  • Individuals living in a homeless shelter where sleeping, bathing or eating accommodations must be shared with individuals and families who are not part of your household
  • Individual working (paid or unpaid) in a homeless shelter where sleeping, bathing or eating accommodations must be shared by individuals and families who are not part of the same household, in a position where there is potential for interaction with shelter residents
  • Public-facing grocery store workers
  • In-person college instructors

UPDATE: There has been at least some clarification on the “education workers” term used to determine eligibility for Phase 1B on Twitter by Gov. Cuomo’s spokesperson Melissa DeRosa.

Original Story:

TOMPKINS COUNTY, N.Y.—After some initial confusion, the Tompkins County Health Department has confirmed that the next phase of the COVID-19 vaccination distribution will begin tomorrow, Jan. 11.

The new phase, termed 1B by the state and county, will include teachers and education workers, first responders, public safety workers, public transit workers, and people 75 years of age and older. The vaccination clinics continue to be held at the old Sears location at the Shops at Ithaca Mall, at 40 Catherwood Road in Ithaca. Those who were already eligible in Phase 1A can still receive vaccinations. More clarification is needed from the state to detail the full list of eligibility in Phase 1B, the health department said—perhaps defining “education workers” more thoroughly, as well as other facets that are not yet known.

The health department does note in its announcement, though, that they are awaiting the delivery of additional vaccination doses. Beyond Monday’s distribution, which is fully scheduled already, further availability of vaccination doses will be dependent on deliveries made by the state, according to Tompkins County Director of Communications Dominick Recckio.

“Phase 1B expands to a large portion of our population and will take weeks to fully vaccinate,” said Public Health Director Frank Kruppa. “We will continue to add more clinics as we receive additional vaccine doses from the State, but we ask the public for patience. We all need to get the vaccine to protect our families and community, however, it will take time.”

Over 2,100 people have already received at least their first vaccination dose in Tompkins County.

If you do not have an appointment already scheduled, the health department is saying to not go to the clinic expecting to be vaccinated, as appointments are required. The health department said that more vaccination sites will be established once more vaccinations are allocated.

More information is available at the county’s COVID-19 vaccination webpage. Otherwise, those interested can sign up for email updates at this link. Those without internet access, but who meet eligibility criteria, can use friends or family to sign up for vaccination clinics.

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Education & Public Health Reporter at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at mbutler@ithacavoice.com