Leaders in Niagara County calling on New York State to ensure COVID vaccine is easily accessible

Niagara County

NIAGARA FALLS N.Y. (WIVB)– Leaders in Niagara County are making sure that residents have a fair shot at receiving the coronavirus vaccine.

The Niagara Falls Health and Equity Task Force, along with Peacemakers from Niagara Falls and North Tonawanda are calling on state officials to implement procedures to ensure the vaccine is easily accessible when the state opens its mass vaccination site in Niagara Falls.

They say having transportation to appointments and technological inequalities can hinder those who qualify for the vaccine but can’t access it at a local pharmacy or at the county vaccination clinic. They’re calling on officials to explore other avenues such as using the helpline 211 as a registration portal to assist those who struggle to get registered.

“There are a lot of different barriers and we have to be very cognizant of that and learn how we can move those barriers to vaccinate the people that really need it,” said Ezra Scott of the Niagara Falls Peacemakers.

Leaders also ask that the state identify which areas lack vaccination rates and establish a closed registration process for those zip codes as well as consider deploying mobile units in the hardest hit and hardest to reach Niagara County neighborhoods. 

Kelly Khatib is a digital reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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