President Joe Biden has been growing more frustrated with those who are refusing to get vaccinated. In a recent speech, he blamed the unvaccinated for the pandemic still booming and taking the lives of an estimated 1,500 per day.
“We’ve been patient, but our patience is wearing thin, and your refusal has cost all of us,” Biden said according to CNN.
Mandating vaccinations for federal workers and removing the option for regular COVID testing over getting vaccinated.
This mandate will affect an estimated 2.5 million workers. Biden plans on signing an executive order to mandate federal contractors be vaccinated as well. Last month, he signed another executive order mandating workers at nursing homes who accept Medicaid and Medicare to be vaccinated.
Making booster shots available
The Center for Disease Control will be meeting next week to determine who should be getting booster shots.
Schools will remain open and 300,000 educators in federal Head Start programs will be mandated to be vaccinated.
With infection rates among children rising, Biden is mandating federal school workers to be vaccinated and asking governors to also mandate teachers and school staff to be vaccinated as well.
More COVID-19 tests will be made available
With the implementation of the Defense Production Act, 25 million free COVID-19 tests will be sent to health clinics. At-home COVID-19 tests will also be made available at online retailers like Amazon and Walmart within the next three months.
Repair the economy
With the eviction moratorium and unemployment benefits ending, Biden has put things in motion in order to help get the economy back on track. Small businesses will have access to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program where they can borrow up to $2 million to stay afloat if the pandemic affected their business. There have also been over $10.9 million jobs available since July.
Testing new COVID-19 medicines
Biden announced that there are new medicines being tested to help those diagnosed with COVID-19.
“We’ve already distributed 1.4 million courses of these treatments to save lives and reduce the strain on hospitals,” he said. “Tonight, I’m announcing will increase the average pace of shipment across the country, a free monoclonal antibody treatments by another 50%.”
Many Black people remain skeptical of getting the vaccine for various reasons. Some are hesitant because of how quickly the vaccine was created and distributed, while others are worried about possible long-term effects on their health. There is also a distrust of the government amongst the Black community that serves as a barrier as well. –And though Black women are three times more likely to die from COVID-19, according to research, many are still not budging.
People who refuse the vaccination won’t be eligible for unemployment benefits, and since there is no eviction moratorium in place as a cushion, their livelihoods are on the line. With these mandates, Black communities will have to choose between remaining unvaccinated or keeping their jobs, homes and financial wellness.