Chester’s Mayor Pleads for Residents to Get COVID-19 Vaccine

Thaddeus Kirkland(left to right): Rosetta Carter, Director of Community Health Education Services, Mayor Thaddeus Kirkland, and Livia Smith, Director of Health Services highlight alarmingly low COVID-19 vaccinations numbers in Chester during a press conference last week. (Submitted Image)

CHESTER, PA — Mayor Thaddeus Kirkland, and officials from the city of Chester’s Bureau of Health, recently held a press conference to highlight the city’s latest COVID-19 vaccination numbers, and to urge residents to get the vaccine amid state data indicating less than 30 percent of the population has been fully or partially vaccinated.

Speaking alongside Livia Smith, Director of Health Services, and Rosetta Carter, Director of Community Health Education Services., Mayor Kirkland started the press conference by stating his feelings about the current vaccination numbers in Chester. “Frankly, we are disappointed and we want folks to start taking this more seriously when it comes to vaccinations and testing,” said Mayor Kirkland. “Our vaccination rate is extremely low. We would have hoped to be at 50% but the information we have received and compiled shows that we are at 27%.”

According to Open Data PA, only 9,674 residents in the city of Chester have been fully vaccinated, with seniors aged 55 through 104 accounting for 53 percent.  “Our push is to make sure the children get vaccinated so that they can go back to school,” said Smith. “Out of the 4,913 school-aged children eligible to receive the vaccine, only 317 are fully vaccinated.”

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The City’s Bureau of Health has been working in collaboration with several local organizations since the start of the pandemic to create accessible testing and vaccination sites for residents. “The vaccine is plentiful in Chester,” said Carter. “We have made it available and have had and will continue to have pop-up vaccine sites where we take it to the people.”

Several of the city’s community partners were also in attendance and offered the public details on their respective organizations’ vaccination clinics.  Information on those sites can be found at the end of this press release.

Before ending the press conference, Mayor Kirkland reiterated how low vaccination rates would continue to disrupt the city’s ability to return to normal. “We had planned on having certain events this year but with those numbers, this administration, along with our Board of Health, and health partners couldn’t in good conscious have people gather in mass numbers knowing the percentage of people vaccinated thus far,” stated Kirkland.  “Our goal is to get that number above 50%. We strongly encourage everyone to get vaccinated. If you’re not going to do it for yourself, do it for someone else.”

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Vaccination Sites/Clinics in Chester:

Westside of Chester:

  • Good Health Pharmacy (2224 W. 9th Street)
  • Rite Aid (2722 W. 9th Street)
  • J. Lewis Crozer Library (7th & Engle Streets)
    July 15, 2021, from 2 – 5 pm
  • Keystone Wellness Center (1929 W. 9th Street)
    Wednesday – Saturday from noon – 4 pm
  • Everest Urgent Care (2600 W. 9th Street)
    EVERY DAY except Sundays
  • St. Daniel’s United Methodist Church (4th & Edward Streets)
    July 10, 2021, from noon – 4 pm

Eastside of Chester:

  • Eastside Inc. (301 E. 9th Street)
    EVERY Wednesday in July from 11 am – 1:30 pm
  • Hunt’s Funeral Home (22nd Street & Providence Avenue)
    July 10, 2021, from 3 – 7pm
  • ChesPenn (125 E. 9th Street)
    APPOINTMENT ONLY: (484) 482-3175
  • Seventh Day Adventist Church (7th & Welsh Streets)
    July 10, 2021, from 10 am – 4 pm
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To watch the entire stream of the press conference, visit https://fb.watch/v/fUqKZmbRc/.

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