Mayor Bill de Blasio is encouraging kids to get vaccinated against COVID-19 ahead of the holidays by offering them cash.
The New York City mayor announced the initiative last week. Under the program, money will be provided to kids, between the ages of 5 to 11, who receive their shot at a city-run vaccination site.
As reported by The City NYC and Chalkbeat, “New York City is extending its $100 vaccine incentive to young children getting vaccinated at school sites or city-run clinics, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday.”
The site explained:
Once children get their first dose, families will receive an email with instructions on how to select a pre-paid $100 debit card or another incentive, including free tickets to sporting events or city attractions. Families can also call 877-VAX4NYC for more information.
“We really want kids to take advantage, families to take advantage of that,” de Blasio told the press. “Everyone can use a little more money around the holidays, but more importantly, we want our kids and families to be safe.”
In a tweet last week, the mayor confirmed, “Kids ages 5-11 are eligible to get the $100 vaccine incentive when they get the #COVID19 vaccine at a City-run site!”
BREAKING NEW$: Kids ages 5-11 are eligible to get the $100 vaccine incentive when they get the #COVID19 vaccine at a City-run site!
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) November 4, 2021
Health officials in de Blasio’s administration did not say children would be able to remove their masks in school now that they are able to get vaccinated.
“The reality is we all want, as public health professionals, to also go back to the day that we and our children don’t have to wear masks and feel the way they did before the pandemic,” Dr. Jay Varma, one of de Blasio’s health advisers, said.
“But also, as [Health Department Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi] has noted, we’re also very thankful that our measures to keep transmission controlled in schools has been working, and so we do feel an obligation, I think — especially given the fact that there is a lot of uncertainty about what level of vaccination will make us all feel like we’re back to normal.”
As The Daily Wire reported last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommends the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 years old.
“The endorsement, by CDC Director Rochelle Walensky on Tuesday, was the last step before doctors, nurses and pharmacists could start giving the shots,” The Wall Street Journal reported.
“Together, with science leading the charge, we have taken another important step forward in our nation’s fight against the virus that causes Covid-19,” Walensky said in a statement Tuesday evening.
“As a mom, I encourage parents with questions to talk to their pediatrician, school nurse or local pharmacist to learn more about the vaccine and the importance of getting their children vaccinated,” Walensky noted.
Earlier, a panel of advisers for the CDC also gave its endorsement of the vaccine for kids in that age bracket.
“We have excellent evidence of efficacy and safety,” said Beth Bell, a panel member and clinical professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Washington. “We have a favorable risk-benefit analysis. We have many parents out there who are really clamoring and want to have their children vaccinated.”