Farmworkers encouraged to get vaccine


Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune

Tiffani Spencer administers the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine during a drive thru clinic at the Madera County Department of Public Health on Saturday.

 

Campaign begins during National Public Health Week


Farmworkers, categorized as frontline essential workers in the Phase 1B vaccine priority group, are now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention established a recommended phased approach for priority populations to receive the vaccine and the farmworker sector represents a large segment of California’s essential workforce. There are more than half a million farmworkers in California.


In serving the continuity of America’s food supply, California farmworkers have suffered higher rates of COVID-19 infection and related fatalities, according to a study by UC Berkeley School of Public Health.


In response, an Ag Taskforce of five county departments of public health and nine community-based organizations is encouraging farmworkers to get vaccinated via a targeted promotional campaign in both English and Spanish that begins the first full week in April, just as National Public Health Week (www.nphw.org), kicks off.


The campaign, whose slogan is “Do Your Part, Save Lives, Vaccinate!” aims to make it easy for farmworkers to get vaccinated in one of five counties in which they work or live — Fresno, Madera, Merced, Tulare or Tuolumne.


Major points of the campaign include


• Getting vaccinated is the best way for individuals to protect themselves, their families, and their communities against COVID-19.


• Vaccines are free, safe, and effective, and have been tested and approved by medical experts.


• Farmworkers are eligible for the vaccine regardless of immigration status or whether they have health insurance.


• Where and how to register for the vaccine in the county where an individual works or lives.


The “Do Your Part, Save Lives, Vaccinate!” campaign is scheduled to hit social media channels and local media outlets this week. Farmworkers and other eligible people can register for the vaccine at myturn.ca.gov. In Madera County everyone ages 16 and older are eligible for vaccination.