AURORA, Ill. (WLS) – Governor JB Pritzker, along with Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin and Black leaders, has set up a mass vaccination clinic to focus on getting the vaccine to the Black community.
The Cathedral of Mercy St. John AME Church, a historic black church founded in 1862, served as the vaccination site. More than 750 people signed up for their first dose on Tuesday.
The vaccination site was only open on Tuesday for this clinic, which was aimed at the Black Community. However, similar clinics are scheduled for March 19th for the LatinX community and March 25th for people with disabilities. The locations and registration process for these clinics are still being finalized.
The Mayor of Aurora worked with the Black Vax Aurora group to launch efforts aimed at ensuring that black residents have access to the vaccine, particularly in the city’s two largest counties, Kane and DuPage.
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, only 2.8% of Kane County’s roughly 88,000 vaccines were distributed to the Black Community. In DuPage County, the number is even lower, at just 2.3% of the roughly 190,000 vaccines distributed.
“One thing will make our community comfortable seeing others who look like us, come up with facts about the vaccine, and take it ourselves,” Mayor Irvin said.
At Aurora’s chief Baptist, Church staff called their senior members directly and helped them sign up for the one-day clinic.
“Of the 240 deaths in Aurora, my mother was number seven,” said Pastor Julian Spencer. “So it’s important to me to tell all of my people that you need to take this vaccine.”
The vaccines were available to qualified black residents in CDC groups 1A, 1B, and 1B +. This includes people 65 and older, healthcare workers, first responders, teachers, and people with a variety of medical conditions, including diabetes, obesity, and cancer. The clinic reached capacity in less than 24 hours.
In almost all cases, those surveyed here received the information directly from someone they knew.
“They sent it to an organization I belong to, Girl Trek. Someone added it to our group chat and I was able to sign up very quickly,” said Bennita Drain.
“I want to try again to do some of the things I didn’t do last year. So yeah, there was no hesitation,” said Tony Robinson.
Governor Pritzker said more vaccine doses are on the way.
“Even if everyone who wants to get the vaccine got it, it would not be enough to achieve herd immunity, so it’s important that we get the message across to those who hesitate that vaccines are safe and effective protection Offer.” against serious COVID illness and death. “
Dr. On the urgency of vaccinating color communities, Anthony Fauci said, “Since minorities, especially browns and blacks, are clearly at higher risk of infection and greater risk of serious illness, we need to get the vaccines to them in a fair manner.”
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