No One You Know
New York Mandate Podcast
New York Mandate Podcast, Ep. 47: New York State Agency Mandate Dissident Addison Reeves

New York Mandate Podcast, Ep. 47: New York State Agency Mandate Dissident Addison Reeves

"There was this tendency to medicalize life itself.": A conversation with an attorney and writer who was fired under New York State's vaccine mandate for state agency employees and moved out of state.

No transcript...

“As an unvaccinated person, they're saying to me that there's something possibly wrong with you, that you're sick, you're ill, you have to prove your innocence. You have to prove that you are worthy of continuing to participate in society, which I find to be a complete reworking of the social contract that I was born into.” - Addison Reeves

If you think it’s important for people to hear Addison’s story, please share it!


In this episode of the New York Mandate Podcast, I talk with Addison Reeves, who was fired for not complying with New York State’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for state agency employees, and moved out of New York State.

She is an attorney and writer, who critiques U.S. political culture and pandemic policies on her blog, Modern Heretic.

Unlike the New York City mandates, the state agency mandate included a testing option. Reeves talked with me about her reasons for objecting to the test-or-vax mandate and what it was like to be a mandate dissident in social and professional circles that were very supportive of restrictive pandemic policies.

She also talked about the role of technology, the normalization of adult vaccination requirements, and how her experiences have changed her views on our political and legal systems, and on humanity.

The New York Mandate Podcast and No One You Know are reader-supported. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.

More from Addison Reeves:

Modern Heretic
Addison Reeves’s blog.

“It’s just…” – Why I Won’t Submit
The Off Guardian published this piece by Addison Reeves in August 2021.

Here are some links related to things we talked about during the episode:

Governor Andrew Cuomo announces state worker mandate
In this July 28, 2021 announcement, then-governor Cuomo announced that the approximately 130,000 New York State workers would be required to take a COVID-19 vaccine or be tested weekly.

The mandate was implmented by his successor, Kathy Hochul, and went into effect on October 12, 2021.

“Key to NYC” Vaccination Mandate Executive Order
The “Key to NYC” mandate required both employees and patrons of restaurants, entertainment venues, and gyms to show proof of vaccination. It began on August 17, 2021, and was lifted on March 7, 2022.

Ivan Illich
Addison Reeves mentioned this theologian, philosopher, and social critic and as her favorite political thinker during our conversation.

About the New York Mandate Podcast

The New York Mandate Podcast is an ongoing series of conversations exploring the costs and consequences of vaccine mandates in New York City. I talk with workers, students, and parents who have been directly affected by the mandates, as well as legal and policy experts.

In late 2021, the City introduced a series of requirements for workers and to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. These requirements were put in place through executive orders issued by the administration of former mayor Bill de Blasio. They covered nearly all workers in New York City, in both the public and private sectors. They also barred unvaccinated adults, including parents, from schools.

Current mayor Eric Adams kept the mandates in place until November 1, 2022 for the private sector and February 10, 2023 for City workers, and has encouraged private employers to put their own vaccine requirements in place.

The views expressed in the New York Mandate podcast are the personal opinions of the people speaking, and are not intended to provide medical or legal advice.

Join the Conversation

Have you lost your job, been put on leave, or lost opportunities to work as a result of your decision not to comply with a New York vaccine mandate? Did you take a vaccine against your wishes in order to keep your job? Please get in touch with me at

No One You Know
New York Mandate Podcast
Conversations with New Yorkers who are bearing the costs and consequences of New York's COVID-19 vaccine mandates.