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Governor Andy Beshear and local leaders attend NAACP vaccine event in Lexington

Published: Feb. 24, 2021 at 11:09 AM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WYMT) - Governor Andy Beshear spoke at a vaccine event in Lexington along with State Sen. Reginald Thomas (D-Lexington), Rep. George Brown Jr. (D-Lexington) and other leaders Wednesday morning.

10 members of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) voiced confidence in and rolled up their sleeves to receive the Moderna vaccine.

“Thought leaders from many communities are stepping forward from all over the state, asking what they can do and how they can help,” said Gov. Beshear. “Today, prominent African-Americans in Lexington are speaking out. Their words of encouragement for receiving the shot help break down some of the barriers that can lead to vaccine inequity.”

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Governor Andy Beshear & Leaders Speak at COVID-19 Vaccine Event in Lexington

Posted by WYMT on Wednesday, February 24, 2021

While 8.4% of Kentucky’s population is African American, only about 4.6% of those who have been vaccinated so far are part of the black community.

“The COVID-19 virus has hit the African-American community especially hard,” said Sen. Reginald Thomas. “I appreciate the Governor being here to promote and stress the importance of being vaccinated. We must encourage all Kentuckians to do the same, which will lead to a safer and healthier community going forward.”

Governor Beshear spoke about how we need to be accountable and take action to make sure every Kentuckian can get vaccinated.

“Equitable distribution is a foundational piece of vaccine distribution,” the Governor said. “This administration will continue this outreach, and the Department for Public Health’s Office of Health Equity will continue to be engaged in all aspects of vaccine rollout and help build on our commitment to equity.”

State Rep. George Brown Jr. noted, “I’m aware of the apprehension of Black and brown communities.” He added, “Based on the science, the vaccine appears to be the best defense available. I, therefore, encourage everyone to get vaccinated.”

The event was organized with the help of Rev. Jim Thurman.

“I was initially reluctant to take the vaccine because of historical reasons,” said the Rev. Jim Thurman, president of the NAACP Lexington-Fayette County Branch. “After much prayer, I saw the value of being vaccinated. COVID-19 was, and still is, hitting the African-American community and other communities of people of color, much harder. We need the vaccine.”

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