McAuliffe releases COVID-19 vaccine strategy
Terry McAuliffe released his plan for defeating COVID-19 on Tuesday, with a strategy focused on deploying public health workers to regions with low vaccination rates, ensuring Virginians have information about vaccine safety and utilizing mobile vaccine clinics to make it easier for Virginians to get vaccinated.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is the most pressing economic issue facing our Commonwealth, and we must do everything in our power to keep students safely in schools and our economy strong. That starts with getting every eligible Virginian vaccinated,” said McAuliffe, the Democratic Party nominee for governor, who served a term in the governor’s office from 2014-2018.
Virginia governors are not permitted to run for consecutive terms by the state constitution.
McAuliffe is seeking to become the second governor in the modern era to be elected to a second non-consecutive term.
His plan, titled Virginia is for Vaccine Lovers: Keeping Virginians Safe, Schools Open, and Our Economy Strong Through COVID-19 Safety and Vaccines, would follow the guidelines set by his successor, Gov. Ralph Northam, who has urged every school division to require vaccines for all school personnel and work to ensure that health systems and nursing homes are following federal vaccine mandates.
The McAuliffe plan would also create incentives for businesses that mandate vaccines for employees, which will allow them to do things like offer retention bonuses for staff, make paid leave available, and more.
In order to improve worker and consumer confidence and drive Virginians safely back into businesses, the McAuliffe plan would launch a voluntary COVID-safety compliance certification and marketing campaign that businesses can participate in to demonstrate their commitment to safety.
The plan would also leverage federal funds to expand access to affordable child care and before and after school programs so parents can stay in the workforce and educators can address learning loss for students.
“As Virginia’s next governor, I will work every single day to rebuild a stronger economy that lifts up every Virginian. We will create good paying jobs and Virginia will lead the nation in our recovery from this pandemic,” McAuliffe said.
Story by Chris Graham