[Ed. – This is actually interesting. Something common with controversial programs: when participants complain about who got the job (as in this case), the real dispute is very often about what’s being done. When the complaint is about what’s being done, more often than not the real sticking point is who got the job. It wouldn’t surprise me if de Blasio reassigned contact tracing away from the health department in order to enforce his own wishes about “what” contact tracing would amount to.]
Barbot’s resignation comes after de Blasio stripped control of the city’s COVID-19 contact tracing program from the health department, which has historically handled tracing. The mayor instead placed the program under Health and Hospitals, the agency that runs the city’s public hospitals.
“We need an atmosphere of unity, of common purpose, and people really focusing on all the parts of this government working together,” de Blasio said, a possible reference to division between the city’s health department and Health and Hospitals. “What I’m saying was, it became clear that there was a need to move forward.”
In recent weeks, the city’s contract tracing program has come under fire after complaints from contact tracers about the program being disorganized and having poor working conditions.