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COVID-19 Vaccinations Begin For Ten Priority Zip Codes In Milwaukee County

Chuck Quirmbach
People enter Milwaukee North Division High School on the first day of a COVID-19 vaccination program at the school.

Local and state health officials have started a COVID-19 vaccination program for adults in ten Milwaukee County zip codes that rate high on a federal social vulnerability index. The zip codes have sizable low-income populations, limited access to transportation and other concerns.

One of the walk-in vaccination sites is North Division High School in Milwaukee.

As Lamar Cox waited in line outside the school Monday, he said he welcomed the Milwaukee Health Department coming out to more neighborhoods.

"We've been waiting for this moment, when we can walk up and take our shot and be fine, because it's less distance you've got to travel. A lot of people don't have the transportation to go out a long way, so bring it to the neighborhood get more turnout," said Cox.

An older woman, who gave her name as Betty, also said it's good to be able to stay close to home for a vaccine shot and lower the chance of being exposed to the coronavirus.

"Very important, because this germ's going around and everyone's getting sick and dying, and stuff. I want to get [the shot] because everybody's getting it and getting well. I want to stay right here a long time," said Betty.

JoAnn Williams said she's a diabetic and scared about COVID-19. She also likes the outreach to certain zip codes, and hopes the vaccinations continue.

Chuck Quirmbach
Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley speaks to the news media outside North Division High School on Monday.

"Keep going. Let people get it that want it. The people that don't want it, and want to take a chance with their lives that's their life. Just let me get mine," said Willams.

Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley said health officials are not checking to make sure vaccine recipients live in the ten targeted zip codes, and that the honor system is in place. He said North Division, and a similar new site at South Division High School, will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Crowley acknowledged many people work during those hours.

"We want to hear directly from those individuals. So, if we need to create more hours to increase the availability for individuals who can't come Monday through Friday, we're willing to look at that," he said.

Crowley said a targeted vaccination program also continues at the Kosciuszko Park Community Center, and plans to get his first shot there Tuesday.

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