MIAMI, Fla. – The push by community leaders to get people vaccinated couldn’t be stronger, yet shockingly, those that are not vaccinated are first responders and those in the healthcare system.
Among those refusing vaccination are 42 percent of Jackson Memorial Health System’s staff – people with a front-row seat to this month’s serious COVID-19 spike.
We ask a JMH staffer, a non-medical employee who is unvaccinated, why not get the vaccine?
He told us: “I don’t believe in a vaccine. I believe we’re not being told the truth.”
We ask him who was it that he didn’t think was being truthful.
“The government,” he responded.
Employees were unsure about going public by talking to Local 10 News. Some did share their “why not?” saying that they have heard mixed messages about the virus and the vaccine.
We asked another non-medical staff who is vaccinated if there are more people in the system deciding to get vaccinated now that there is another uptick in COVID-19 cases.
“Well, yes, yes. They kind of see some of us that actually took the vaccine and it’s giving them a confidence.”
Miami Dade County’s Mayor Danielle Cava Levine and others local leaders, including police chiefs, launched a public plea as South Florida COVID-19 admissions doubled and tripled in July with the majority of those unvaccinated against COVID-19.
“I cannot get in people’s heads,” Cava Levine said. “In any change strategy, there are always the people that are hardest to persuade, and we are definitely at that point.”
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who has been firmly behind personal choice and against mandates, spoke out for vaccines on Wednesday.
“These vaccines are saving lives. If you are vaccinated, fully vaccinated, the chance of you getting seriously ill or dying from COVID is effectively zero,” he said.
Florida still remains a choice state without any vaccine mandate. Fire and police departments can’t ask first responders if they are vaccinated and the staff doesn’t have to say, but increasingly leaders at every local, state and federal are coming out with very strong messages. That message is that vaccines are safe and necessary, not only for individual health, but for the public good.