Is it a candidate’s duty, and for that matter a public official’s as well, to disclose whether they’ve been vaccinated? Unvaccinated, knocking on doors, greeting people in neighborhoods, interacting with campaign staff raises serious questions about exacerbating the public health threat.
Recovering from covid after her City Council primary win, Wanda Simmons is vexed by Connecticut Post reporter Brian’s Lockhart’s vax coverage of her illness. Simmons says she’s not opposed to vaccines, but won’t disclose if she’s been vaccinated. She has parried Lockhart’s reporting on her Facebook page.
Brian Lockhart is obsessed with writing his narrative about my posts.
I am not opposed to vaccine’s. Families should make informed choices for their families. Not be forced, mislead, coerced and mandated!
CHOICE. These companies have zero liability should harm occur listening to others SCARE you into going against your beliefs!
It’s illegal and parents know the laws do your research and fight for your families!
Fighting from my hospital bed! These journalist . Please quote me correctly
Simmons’ nondisclosure lingers a rhetorical conclusion: she’s not vaxed.
What about all the people in her contact sphere? If residents of the East End who voted for her knew she wasn’t vaxed, would it have influenced their vote? If she was asked on the campaign trail if she was vaxed was her answer: I believe vaccinations should be a choice.
Wanda, we’d welcome your perspective in the OIB comments section.
Excerpt from Lockhart’s story:
Health officials and political leaders, including her potential City Council partner, are questioning council candidate Wanda Simmons’s stance on COVID-19 vaccination in the wake of her online comments Tuesday.
Simmons, who announced that she had been diagnosed with the illness over the weekend and was subsequently hospitalized, took to social media to urge residents not to allow her situation to convince them to get inoculated against the coronavirus.
“Do not allow my bout with COVID-19 scare you into getting vaccinated!!!,” Wanda Simmons posted Tuesday evening on Facebook. “Stop allowing people (to) push their agenda onto you.”
Her comments questioning coronavirus vaccines come as Bridgeport struggles with a low vaccination rate–58.57 percent of the population has received at least one shot, according to the state. Of the three available vaccines, two require two doses.
According to data from a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study published Aug. 27, those who are not vaccinated may be more than four times more likely to contract COVID-19, and nearly 30 times more likely to be hospitalized as a result of the disease.
One reason for the low vaccination rate in the city is continued hesitancy among the Black and Hispanic communities.
Simmons is Black, as is Councilman Ernie Newton, her council district running partner in the East End. Each district has two representatives. Simmons defeated incumbent Eneida Martinez, Newton’s fellow Democratic Town Committee-endorsed candidate, in their Sept. 14 council primary, by 13 votes. Simmons instead had the backing of the Working Families Party.
In contrast to Simmons, Newton has used his role as an elected official and prominent Democratic activist to promote the COVID vaccine. In February he posted a video of himself receiving a shot on Facebook to encourage other Black residents to do so.
Dr. Anthony Santella is the interim chair of the University of New Haven’s Department of Health Administration and Policy, and that educational institution’s COVID response coordinator. He found Simmons’ Facebook posts troubling and “irresponsible,” particularly given she is a public figure.
“The data’s clear both at the state and federal level that unvaccinated persons drive the pandemic,” Santella said Wednesday. “So when I hear someone who has a platform contribute toward misinformation myths around how the illness works, how it’s spread, how concerned people should be, it’s alarming.”
Full story here.