Digest

6 Things Local Elected Officials Can Do Today to Help Increase Vaccinations

Democratic Municipal Officials,

The White House has declared June a COVID vaccination Month of Action, sprinting to get more Americans vaccinated in time for July 4th. Below you can find six actions DMOs can take today to increase vaccination rates in your community.

You can also view the Biden Administration’s Fact Sheet on the Month of Action, and use the resources in the Digital Toolkit for spreading the word on social media. Be sure to tag @NationalDMO or send me an email at Nils.Robbins@NationalDMO.org so we can share your work directly with the White House.

Sincerely,

Nils Robbins
Communications and Operations Director

 

Month of Action to Increase COVID-19 Vaccinations
6 Things Local Elected Officials Can Do Today to Help Increase Vaccinations

For the month of June – from June 4 to July 4 – the “We Can Do This” campaign is launching a Month of Action to mobilize an all-of-America sprint to get more Americans vaccinated, so that more people can get the protection they need to be safe from a pandemic and get back to the things we love. You – local elected officials are key trusted messengers that know your communities better than most and are a trusted source of information about the vaccines. Take action today and help us continue to spread the word about the importance of getting vaccinated, boost vaccine confidence, and share information on how and where to get vaccinated. This document provides 6 actionable things you can do today to support the Month of Action and compliments other resources such as the Mayors Toolkit.

  1. Host a Pop-up Vaccination Clinic(s): Host a pop-up vaccination clinic in your community/district where vaccinations remain low.  The “On-Site Vaccination Clinic Toolkit” here provides information for employers, localities, and community partners on how to work directly with a national pharmacy to set up vaccination clinics.
  1. Encourage Local Employer Vaccination Efforts: Work with local employers in your community to ensure they are providing on-site vaccinations, paid time off, and incentives for workers. Research shows that incentives – such as cash rewards, prizes, discounts, or other special offers  – make it more likely a person will get vaccinated. Additionally, ensure all city/local government workers in your jurisdiction have access to on-site vaccinations and paid time off to get vaccinated and recover.
  1. Make Public Transportation to Vaccinations FreeAdvance equity and address a key barrier to vaccination by providing free, accessible public transit to vaccination sites during our National Month of Action. More than 350 transit systems across the nation are providing free transportation to vaccination sites—many using funding from the American Rescue Plan. Here you’ll find examples you can employ from hard-hit and high-risk communities across both urban and rural regions. Help ensure free public transportation in your community/district for a day, a weekend, or a week.
  1. Promote the COVID-19 College Challenge: Help recruit higher education institutions in your community/district to join the COVID College Challenge. If a college – community college, college or university – is already signed up, work with us to amplify and promote vaccination events. Colleges can sign-up up here WhiteHouse.gov/COVIDCollegeChallenge
  1. Canvass and Go Door-to-Door: Host direct, door-to-door, person-to-person canvassing efforts to sign people up for vaccination appointments, provide vaccine education, and to promote walk-up vaccinations. Talking points, flyers, scripts, and best practices are provided at https://wecandothis.hhs.gov/resources
  1. Share Resources and Messages that Build Vaccine Confidence: Amplify on your social media channels, record and post a PSA, or do local earned media events to bring attention to the importance of getting vaccinated (see next page for messages that work and FAQs). Emphasize that vaccines are available at no cost to everyone age 12 and older, regardless of immigration or insurance status. The vaccine is free, rides are free, child care is free. Plus, you can get rewards like free sports tickets and discounts at stores.

If you are interested in taking one of these 6 actions or to join the Month of Action, please email us at: COVIDIGA@who.eop.gov.

MESSAGING GUIDANCE: Messages that Work to Help Build Confidence in the Vaccines

  • Getting vaccinated gets us back to normal. Getting vaccinated is the best way to defeat this virus and get back to safely gathering with family, friends, weddings, sports, and travel.
  • The vaccine is free and available to everyone. Vaccines are available at no cost to everyone age 12 and older living in the United States, regardless of immigration or insurance status.
  • If you have questions, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider. Estimates show that 90% of doctors have gotten a shot themselves.
  • More than 170 million Americans have received a vaccine. They are protected from this deadly virus and are on the path back to normal.

FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions about the COVID-19 Vaccine

How can I find a place to get vaccinated?

  • Visit Vaccines.gov or vacunas.gov
  • Text your ZIP Code to 438-829 to find a vaccine near you. In Spanish, text your ZIP Code to VACUNA (822-862)
  • Call the National COVID-19 Vaccination Hotline (1-800-232-0233)

For updates and other material resources, visit https://wecandothis.hhs.gov/. Note, many places are now offering walk-in options, so an appointment may not be necessary.

What if I have to miss work?

  • Thousands of employers have answered the President’s call to offer paid time off for vaccination.
  • The IRS is providing a tax credit to small- and medium-sized employers to help them provide employees paid time off to get vaccinated and to recover if they have any side effects.
  • Ask your employer if they offer paid time off.

What if I need a ride or other help to get vaccinated?

  • Through July 4th, Uber and Lyft are now offering free rides to and from vaccination sites nationwide – just use the app.
  • Over 350 local transit agencies are offering free, accessible public transit to vaccination sites, so check with your local government to see what might be available to you.
  • Some companies are offering other resources like free child care while getting vaccinated and free rewards after you get vaccinated. Visit Vaccines.gov – Incentives to learn more.

Contact information for Local Elected Officials: COVIDIGA@who.eop.gov.

Hollies Winston Named DMO Blue Star Candidate

The Board of Directors of Democratic Municipal Officials (DMO) has named Hollies Winston a Blue Star Candidate in his race for Mayor of Brooklyn Park, MN. Born and raised in Minnesota, Winston’s campaign focuses on small business development, community safety, and engaging the full diversity of the Brooklyn Park community. Cities across America are recovering from the past four years, and this race represents our collective opportunity to move forward into security and prosperity as a united, welcoming nation. 

DMO President and Philadelphia At-large Councilman Derek Green commented on Winston’s recommendation as a Blue Star Candidate. “Hollies is running to be a true public servant. His vision for Brooklyn Park is a city where everyone has access to thriving local businesses, life-long housing solutions, and community involvement in neighborhood security. I look forward to welcoming him to the ranks of DMO.”

DMO Board Member and Minnesota State Chair Gary Hansen (Council Member, Eagan) added “Hollies Winston believes that diversity is an asset, and he will work tirelessly to create an environment that embraces our differences and works for all of us. His leadership in Brooklyn Park will serve as an example to help guide our efforts to achieve equity and inclusion.” 

Brooklyn Park shares a story with many Minnesota municipalities. Originating as a community of German and Scandinavian immigrants, it has expanded to include African Americans, Hmong, LatinX, and Native denizens. Among these is Winston’s own family, who moved to the area after the Great Migration. 

Winston has a long history of ensuring no one is left behind in Brooklyn Park. He is the Chairman and CEO of Guaranteed America, an advocacy firm where he manages a coalition of businesses that support minority owned enterprises. Winston also sits on the Minnesota Asset Building Coalitions Strategic Board, where he advocates to non-profits and elected officials for resources that support minority and small businesses.

The DMO serves to connect, engage, and empower elected officials who identify as Democrats. Democratic Municipal Officials initiated the highly selective Blue Star Candidate program to draw national attention to local Democratic candidates, in particular when such an election would shift a mayor’s seat or council majority from red to blue. These candidates have been vetted and recommended by the DMO Board of Directors.

If you would like to learn more about Hollies Winston’s campaign or contribute you can visit https://hollieswinston.org/. Winston’s supporters include ASDC President Ken Martin and Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, and he has the backing of the DFL. Election Day is August 10th, so don’t wait to pitch in. 

Deborah Peoples Named DMO Blue Star Candidate

The Executive Committee of Democratic Municipal Officials (DMO) has endorsed Deborah Peoples in her race to represent Fort Worth, TX as mayor. Her opponent has been endorsed by both the outgoing Republican mayor, as well as Texas Governor Greg Abbott. This is an important election to flip Fort Worth blue after a decade of Republican control. Most importantly, this is a very winnable race for Democrats. Election Day is this Saturday, June 5th, and we here at DMO encourage you to help however you can in the next few days.

Deborah Peoples is a former AT&T executive, responsible for managing over 5,000 staff members over 22 states. As mayor, Peoples would bring her experience for managing large operations and growing businesses. She has since devoted herself more directly to working in the community, including serving as Chair of the Tarrant County Democratic Party. Her time as chair was marked by increased civic engagement and voter turnout, both essential in our work as Democrats. Her victory would secure Fort Worth its first black mayor in history, and make Fort Worth the largest southern city run by a black woman. And in the ongoing fight to turn Texas blue, Deborah Peoples would help get out the vote, and shine as an enduring reminder that Democrats can win across the state. 

The DMO serves to connect, engage, and empower elected officials who identify as Democrats throughout the US. Democratic Municipal Officials initiated the highly selective Blue Star Candidate program to draw national attention to local Democratic candidates, in particular when such an election would shift a mayor’s seat or council majority from red to blue. These candidates have been vetted and recommended by the DMO Executive Committee.

We strongly encourage you to help Deborah in the final days of her campaign. If you would like to learn more about Deborah People’s campaign or contribute you can visit https://www.deborahpeoplesformayor.com. This race has the attention of the Democratic National Committee, and we hope you can support Deborah before this Saturday. 

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