SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — California governor Gavin Newsom is urging those who are unvaccinated to get vaccinated. He said people’s choice not to get vaccinated increases COVID-19 cases, prolonging the pandemic and killing people.
“Too many people have chosen to live with this virus,” said Gov. Newsom. “We’re at a point in this epidemic, this pandemic where choice, individuals choice not to get vaccinated is now impacting the rest of us in a profound and devastating and deadly way. That choice has lead to an increase in case rates, growing concern around increase in death rates and self evidently around hospitalizations. Not just around here in the state of California that has a 5.3% positivity rate. That’s half of Texas, roughly of states like Florida but across the rest of the nation.”
He continued equating vaccine hesitancy as similar to drinking and driving. “You don’t have the choice to go out and drink and drive and put everyone else’s lives at risk. That’s the equivalent of this moment with the deadliness and efficiency of the Delta virus.”
Newsom also announced that all state employees have to get vaccinated and prove they’re vaccinated. Those who are not vaccinated will have to get tested once or twice a week.
“246,000 Californians are state employees,” said Newsom, “246,000 Californians should be vaccinated. And if they’re not vaccinated and cannot verify that they’re vaccinated we require that they get tested.”
We're seeing a very concerning increase in local COVID-19 cases, due to unvaccinated people falling ill and spreading it to others. The sooner you're vaccinated, the sooner you and your friends and family are protected. Find a FREE vaccination site at https://t.co/Gbrj9yw1S2 pic.twitter.com/QqA598OTaK— SBC Public Health (@SBCPublicHealth) July 26, 2021
In Santa Barbara County only 61% of eligible people are fully vaccinated. 69.1% of those eligible have gotten at least one dose. Santa Barbara County Public Health officer Dr. Henning Ansorg said that’s not good enough. He said this surge in cases is preventable. And if everyone gets vaccinated the pandemic could be over.
There are multiple walk-in clinics in Santa Barbara County to get a COVID-19 vaccine. Some are offering gift cards for those who get vaccinated. For a list of where to find a walk-in clinic visit MyTurn.ca.gov.