For Immediate Release  

Data shows Latinos and Blacks highest infections rates, lowest vaccination rates in Alameda County 

OAKLAND, CA — June 22, 2021 —  Hit hardest with COVID-19 Deaths in East Oakland, the epicenter of the deadly scourge of the Coronavirus pandemic, The Unity Council, La Clinica de La Raza and UCSF have fought together to stop the virus with testing and COVID-19 prevention protocol.  Now armed with a vaccine, the groups’ have a more effective way to prevent death with a series of events to administer vaccines with the “Por mi, Por ti, Por Fruitvale / For me, for you, for Fruitvale” outreach multi- media campaign that includes public service announcements, please click on toolkit here.   

The data confirms there is a need for strong action now to save more lives. Click here to find out the current statistics: https://covid19.ca.gov/.

With the help of UCSF Community Ambassadors, the “Por mi, Por ti, Por Fruitvale / For me, for you, for Fruitvale” outreach campaign will encourage East Oakland residents to utilize free vaccination sites. Organizers hope the hard-hit Latino and Black community, as the Alameda County Health Department data shows, will take even more effective life-saving action by getting vaccinated. With the highest infection rates and the lowest vaccination rates, the group joined forces to promote local vaccination sites like the site operated by La Clinica de la Raza located on 1029 International Boulevard Oakland with the capacity of distributing 500 daily doses to Alameda County residents. 

“We believe our joint efforts will be even more powerful because we have the vaccines that scientifically have a high efficacy rate of preventing the spread of the virus or substantially limiting people from being sick to the point of hospitalization,” said Jane Garcia, CEO of La Clínica de La Raza.

“We are encouraging people to get vaccinated and ensure that everyone in the family is vaccinated,” said Dr. Alicia Fernández, MD, Professor of Medicine and Director of the UCSF Latinx Center of Excellence. “The sun is shining; summer is here and it is easy to slip into complacency because hospitalizations are down.  The community ambassadors can help facilitate vaccination access so that the California reopening goes well, despite fewer precautions and potentially more variants.”

Reflecting the demographics of East Oakland, the Community Ambassadors speak multiple languages, including Spanish, Vietnamese, Cantonese, Tagalog, and Arabic. and represent a range of ethnic groups. All Ambassadors will receive training by UCSF with supervision by The Unity Council. 

Churches, preschools, nonprofit agencies and food distribution sites will be the sites of pop-up information booths staffed by CSU East Bay and SF State students trained via UCSF’s Latinx Center of Excellence. Community Ambassadors will help people make vaccine appointments on virtual platforms used by local health clinics and mass vaccination sites.  

“One of the most powerful tools we have in our continued efforts to eradicate the destruction caused by COVID-19 is the trust of our neighbors,” said Chris Iglesias, CEO of Unity Council.  “From the onset, we have continually taken effective action to stop this deadly onslaught in our community.  Our recent client survey shows nearly 70% of our community members want to get vaccinated but don’t know how. The twenty-five UCSF trained Community Ambassadors will help remove language and digital barriers that have kept people from making appointments for vaccinations.”

“The Community Ambassadors students have the opportunity both to do service and to gain professional skills by participating in a series of panels focused on careers in the health sciences. We are holding panels related to nursing, research, public health, medicine, and mentorship and professionalism,” said Alice Fishman, administrator for the Community Ambassador Program.  

There have been medical reports about some additional benefits of masking, sanitizing hands, and social-distancing organizers say. One benefit has been the decrease of influenza.  The joint efforts of The Unity Council, La Clinica de La Raza and UCSF are making for a healthier community in the fight against COVID-19.

For information about the vaccination sites, the UCSF Community Ambassadors, and the “Por mi, Por ti, Por Fruitvale / For me, for you, for Fruitvale” outreach multi-media campaign, visit The Unity Council: https://unitycouncil.org; La Clinica Raza: https://laclinica.org/; and UCSF Latinx Center of Excellence: https://cvp.ucsf.edu/programs/capacity-building-training/ucsf-lcoe.

ABOUT THE UNITY COUNCIL, please visit: https://unitycouncil.org/who-we-are/about-us/

ABOUT UCSF, please visit: https://www.ucsf.edu/about 

ABOUT LA CLINICA, please visit: https://laclinica.org/about/ 

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