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Statewide taskforce faced with new urgency to vaccinate Black Floridians

A state taskforce is working to encourage Black Floridians to get vaccinated.
A state taskforce is working to encourage Black Floridians to get vaccinated.(Source: WAVE 3 News)
Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 4:22 PM CDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CAPITOL NEWS SERVICE) - The Statewide Coronavirus Vaccination Community Education and Engagement Taskforce met Wednesday with an urgent plea to Floridians to get vaccinated as the state saw new cases nearly double this week.

The Taskforce is primarily focused on encouraging Black Floridians to take the vaccine. The current vaccination rate among Black Floridians is 23 percent, compared to 43 percent of white Floridians.

Taskforce Chair Dr. Reverend RB Holmes pushed other members to double their efforts in light of what he described as a deplorable Black vaccination rate.

“Somebody said the definition of madness is doing the same thing the same way over again and expect miraculous outcomes. It doesn’t work that way. We as pastors and leaders, bishops, we must be the ones advocating for our people. We allowed a lot of things to happen prior to COVID-19. That’s why minorities and people of color have died and gotten sick at a disproportionate rate. It’s a moral call,” said Holmes.

The group discussed efforts to partner with Black media to reach millennials and older Black Floridians alike. The Taskforce also emphasized the need to push local governments to ensure federal dollars meant to be used for vaccination education and outreach efforts are used for their proper purpose.