Lawmakers look to instill faith in vaccine, dispel rumors


ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — With vaccination registration open, the next hurdle in the fight against COVID-19 is getting enough people to take the shot.

Some lawmakers say the push to get the vaccine out will be pointless if they can’t get enough people to take the vaccine.

“Please take the vaccine because if you don’t do that, you defeat the whole purpose,” said Albany County Legislator William Clay.

Clay not only works as a lawmaker, but as a leader in one of Albany’s largest church. He’s taking the vaccine on Thursday, in public, in efforts to build trust within Albany’s minority community to take the vaccine.

“People are dying like flies. Look at California. We can be another California,” Clay said.

On Tuesday, 318 people died in LA County alone due to the virus while only 164 people died in the entire state of New York.

“Don’t let people, you know, use fear tactics to scare you off from taking the vaccine,” Clay said.

Part of combating fear is education. Clay’s counterpart at the Albany County Legislature Carolyn McLaughlin is working with the South End Collaborative to give people the education needed to make a sound decisions.

“We have to be extra vigilant about educating ourselves. And those of us who are leaders have to spend the time to educate people in the community,” McLaughlin said.

To get some sort of normalcy, health officials say 80 percent of the population must take the vaccine. The collaborative is circulating a survey to see why there’s hesitancy for getting a vaccination.

“I’m not saying push this down anyone’s throat, but make sure they have the adequate information to make that decision,” McLaughlin said.

According to the Poynter Institute, polls have found between 50 to 70 percent of Americans willing to get vaccinated. That’s a number lower than health officials would like.

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