La Casa De Amistad helping provide more access to testing and vaccines for minorities
SOUTH BEND, Ind.--- With more than a million cases confirmed Monday across the country, local organizations are pushing for more people to be vaccinated, especially communities of color, in an attempt to get those numbers down.
The spike, also coinciding with a widespread shortage of rapid tests.
La Casa De Amistad said like many others they’re experiencing the testing shortages firsthand, but said there are no shortages on vaccines. So, they’re encouraging everyone especially people of color to roll up their sleeve.
“They’re worried about what is going to happen to you, they’re injecting with something and I just want to say I’m fine. This is my third shot and if they got a fourth one I’ll take a fourth one and I encourage everyone to get out and take the shot,” said Rodney Clark, who received his booster shot at the vaccine clinic hosted by La Casa de Amistad in partnership with the state health department.
Communities of color, particularly Black and Latino have been harder hit amid the pandemic. Which is why Clark said he’s stressing the importance of getting immunized.
“I think it’s very important today because of all this stuff that is going on. People getting sick and with our race and color we to be extra careful. It’s important for our kids and it’s important for our senior citizens,” said Clark.
“It’s necessary for every people. To help families and help communities,” added Orlando Johnson who also received his booster Tuesday.
Officials said hesitancy along with barriers have had a greater impact on communities of color, with Indiana’s Vaccine Dashboard reporting less than 20% of eligible Hoosiers in that group getting immunized so far. A number La Casa De Amistad is hoping to boost.
“Numbers were low as soon as vaccines rolled out and many times it’s some of that trust that where the community trusts they can go and who they can trust with what they’re being told. So, as it comes to vaccines, what vaccines are available, how they work and etc, La Casa De Amistad wanted to play a part in that,” said Juan Constantino, the executive director of La Casa De Amistad.
La Casa De Amistad will be holding a follow up clinic February 1st where testing will also be available.
Like the rest of the state, the organization is still experiencing a shortage on rapid testing, but said they do have plenty of PCR tests available at La Casa De Amistad and their other testing site at 2910 West Western Avenue that runs Monday, Wednesday, and Friday during the afternoon.