Vice President Kamala Harris is urging the Black community to get their COVID-19 vaccines, pointing out that “Black people are disproportionately likely to contract the virus and die from it.”
“We know when you look at who the frontline workers are, who is (at) the most risk disproportionately,” Harris told MSNBC’s Al Sharpton, in a clip played Thursday on “Morning Joe” from an interview recorded for Sharpton’s Sunday morning news show. “We are talking about people of color.”
Harris added that Black people are being “disproportionately” affected by the disease, both in terms of deaths and through economic issues.
“Black small businesses, as many as I have seen, 40%, are going out of business or have gone out of business,” said Harris. “If we want to get control of this virus that is harming us at a disproportionate rate, part of it is to get vaccinated when it is our turn.”
She acknowledged to Sharpton that many people in the Black community have a “righteous skepticism” about the vaccine, given the history of medical testing that has taken place in the United States.
“There’s a righteous skepticism if you know history,” said Harris. “But I promise you and I am telling you this vaccine is safe, and it will save your life and the lives of your family and your community, so get your vaccine when it is your turn. It will save your life.
“Let’s not let COVID get us. Let’s get the vaccine instead.”
Harris is attending a vaccination event Thursday morning at a southeast D.C. supermarket to prompt the administration’s Federal Retail Pharmacy Program for vaccines, according to a White House report. The administration last week increased the distribution of vaccines from 1 million to 2 million to 7,000 pharmacies nationwide.
The vice president also told Sharpton that it is vital for Congress to pass the president’s $1.9 trillion COVID bill, the American Rescue Plan, but at the same time, she has faith in “our ability to get through this and be better on the other side, to lift folks up and lift ourselves up when we have the opportunity.”
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