Governor Newsom promises more vaccines for vulnerable populations in Kern

February 22, 2021 /

Governor Gavin Newsom announced Monday during a visit to Arvin that 11 new COVID-19 mobile vaccines sites will go live in the Central Valley this week, including one in Arvin.

This will be Arvin’s first vaccination site, according to the Kern Public Health’s Department’s interactive map. The purpose of these sites is to provide vaccines to the most “vulnerable and valuable” populations.

“The issue of equity needs to be front and center,” he said at the press conference. “These are the folks that never took the day off and never complained.”

Arvin Mayor Olivia Trujillo and Supervisor Leticia Perez thanked Newsom for visiting Arvin, a farmworking town.

“I am truly honored to have you here in our beautiful city of Arvin,” said Trujillo. “I have prayed for this for our community because of our farmworkers.”

To help distribute more vaccines, Newsom announced Kern County, along with the rest of the Central Valley, will receive an increase in vaccines beginning this week. Kern County will see an increase in vaccine allocation by 78 percent and the Central Valley by 58 percent. This week alone, Kern will receive 15,000 vaccines, according to the Governor. Newsom said the state is also redirecting 34,000 doses of the vaccine to the Central Valley.

Although Newsom stressed equity and administering vaccines to farmworkers, he did not discuss how the state will ensure farmworkers receive vaccines. Last week, the State announced it will set aside 10 percent of vaccines for educators, but it made no mention of setting aside vaccines for farmworkers, another group eligible for vaccines.

According to Newsom, the State has administered 7.3 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Newsom said the State’s case rate, positivity rate, death rate and hospitalization rate are all decreasing.

The Kern County Public Health Department confirmed Monday 111 new COVID-19 cases in Kern and 10 new COVID-19 related deaths. This brings the total number of cases to 101,849 and 783 deaths.

Elizabeth Sanchez

Elizabeth Sanchez

Elizabeth Sanchez is the program associate for South Kern Sol. She can be reached at elizabeth@southkernsol.org.