Nonprofits and the Coronavirus Vaccine

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Nonprofits play many important roles engaging people in their communities. Nonprofits helped get out the count last year for the 2020 Census. Nonprofits helped register millions of new voters and encouraged them to go to the polls (both in-person and via mail). Now, many nonprofits have a new role to play: encouraging people in our communities to get vaccinated – and, for some, to serve as vaccination sites. As this piece from the Daily Trojan illustrates, nonprofits are a vital part of the vaccination effort.

As with those other civic engagement roles, it’s important to understand and respect the reasons why some people are hesitant to participate. Both historic abuses and more recent mixed messaging and misinformation are causing millions to doubt the safety and necessity for the vaccine.

One example of how nonprofits can come together to help their community comes from Washington State, where the Grays Harbor RISE coalition came together to better serve Spanish speaking and Latinx clients by ensuring public health information was reaching everyone in the community.

Nonprofit leaders also need to make important decisions about their workplaces. Will vaccines be required or optional? Will your organization follow the lead of some businesses by providing incentives for employees to get vaccinated?

While there will be many decisions to make, we all need to follow the advice of doctors and scientists to help get the pandemic under control. Nonprofits can help ensure everyone in our communities feels comfortable getting the vaccine when they are eligible to receive it.

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