More than a thousand people opposed to vaccine mandates rallied in front of Los Angeles City Hall on Sunday. A slew of featured speakers was interspersed with musical acts, and the streets were lined with big rigs that were part of the “People’s Convoy” that had traveled to Los Angeles for the rally after a nationwide tour that included protests in Washington, D.C.
Thousands Rally In LA To Oppose COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates
Thousands of people including truckers and firefighters from across the country gathered Sunday outside Los Angeles City Hall to protest vaccination mandates designed to slow the spread of COVID-19.The crowd gathered at Grand Park to hear speakers and performers, while big-rig trucks from the “People’s Convoy” were parked on nearby streets. Members of the convoy jammed traffic during a Washington, D.C., protest earlier this year. (Dovarganes, 4/10)
Los Angeles Times:
Opponents Of Vaccine Requirements Gather For ‘Defeat The Mandates’ Rally In L.A.
Vendors hawked T-shirts with swipes at President Biden and his messages about vaccines, while volunteers walked around with petitions to recall L.A. County Dist. Atty. George Gascón. Other volunteers handed out fliers for a variety of Republican politicians in California. “I won’t put that mask on because all I can think of is anger,” said Judy Mikovits, a virologist who espouses a litany of debunked views about COVID-19 and ailments such as chronic fatigue. (Oreskes, 4/10)
12 State Police Members Fired For Not Getting COVID Vaccine
Eleven Massachusetts State Police troopers and one sergeant have been fired for not getting vaccinated against COVID-19, as required by an executive order issued last year, the state police said. State Police spokesperson Dave Procopio said in an email Sunday the 12 individuals were terminated Friday in the culmination of an internal hearing process. (4/10)
The Wall Street Journal:
School Reopening Mess Drives Frustrated Parents Toward GOP
Democrat Jennifer Loughran spent the pandemic’s early days sewing face masks for neighbors [in Bridgewater, N.J.]. Last month, as a newly elected school-board member, she voted to lift the district’s mask mandate. That came four months after she voted for the state’s Republican candidate for governor. After a monthslong political identity crisis, Ms. Loughran decided her opposition to her party’s mask mandates, economic restrictions and school-closure policies outweighed her support for positions on climate change, abortion and gay rights, at least for the moment. (Bender, 4/1)
In other news about the vaccine rollout —
The Washington Post:
The Next Leap In Coronavirus Vaccine Development Could Be A Nasal Spray
As the omicron variant of the coronavirus moved lightning-fast around the world, it revealed an unsettling truth. The virus had gained a stunning ability to infect people, jumping from one person’s nose to the next. Cases soared this winter, even among vaccinated people. That is leading scientists to rethink their strategy about the best way to fight future variants, by aiming for a higher level of protection: blocking infections altogether. If they succeed, the next vaccine could be a nasal spray. (Johnson, 4/10)
Bay Area News Group:
Next New COVID-19 Vaccine Will Look Different
After deploying four COVID-19 shots in a little more than two years, the nation is absorbing a troubling realization: That’s a pace that’s impossible to sustain. This past week, experts began charting a path to a future that is less perfect – but more practical. It means building a vaccine that targets more than one strain of the virus. It would reduce severe disease and death, but not prevent every infection. If the design is changed, all vaccines will be updated. Manufacturers will likely offer the same vaccine formulation to everyone, rather than a mélange of different products for different people on different schedules. And the goal is to have it ready by next fall when the risk of illness is likely to soar. That’s a very tight deadline. (Krieger, 4/10)
Community Advocates Have Worked Tirelessly To Close The Latino Vaccination Gap. It’s Working
Before the vaccination clinic opened its doors at the Farmworker Association of Florida, Teresa was waiting outside. She was first in line for her COVID-19 booster vaccine. … The farmworker association is just one of many community groups fighting for COVID-19 resource equity for Latinos. The quick spread of misinformation, language and cultural barriers, medical accessibility for rural and low-income populations, as well as a historically complicated relationship with the medical system have resulted in a perfect storm for the Latino community, which trailed behind the white population in vaccination rates in 2021. Latino population now achieving a higher vaccination rate than other racial and ethnic groups. (Feito, 4/8)
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.