NEW YORK (1010 WINS) – Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Sunday that he won’t get the COVID-19 vaccine until it’s available for Black, Hispanic and poor communities in his group in New York state.
During pre-recorded remarks at the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, the governor said that “one of our pressing challenges is to make sure that the vaccine is made available fairly.”
“I am committed to social and racial justice in the distribution of this vaccine,” Cuomo said. “Race or income will not determine who lives and who dies. And I mean it. And that's why I say to you today that I want to take the vaccine. I move around a lot and come into contact with many people and I would feel much safer if I took the vaccine. But I will not take the vaccine until the vaccine is available for my group in Black, Hispanic and poor communities around the state.”
Cuomo said the pandemic has “exposed many existing injustices in our society” and “showed us the health disparities that exist, and how many communities don't have fair access to healthcare.”
The governor said the state is committed to making the vaccine available to everyone, noting a special task force has been set up that's led by Attorney General Letitia James, National Urban League President and CEO Marc Morial, Secretary of State Rossana Rosado and Healthfirst President and CEO Pat Wang.
As part of the effort, Cuomo said the state is designing special portable units that can be pop-up vaccination sites and brought to public housing authorities, churches and community centers around the state.