Simmons Covid Case Raises Questions About Vaccine Disclosure

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.



  1. I personally find Wanda Simmons attitude toward the covid vaccine reprehensible at best and outlandish at its worst. She’s out shaking hands, knocking on doors and talking to people while jeopardizing their lives as well as the lives of their children 12 and younger who lack an avenue to be vaccinated. Deaths of Black’s is 178 deaths per 100,000  people of covid while whites die at 124 people per 100,000 deaths or 1.7 times higher than that of white people. We’ve lost at least 73,462 Black lives to COVID-19 to date. Black people account for 15% of COVID-19 deaths where race is known.
    How can a public figure who claims to want the best for the community she hopes to serves be so cavalier about protecting themselves and their community from death by covid? The people of the 139th should be outraged and appalled that the person that wants to represent them could be a Spreader of death even though a way out of this pandemic is the very thing that she rails against, vaccinations. SHAME ON YOU WANDA SIMMONS, SHAME ON YOU!

  2. Wanda may have the right not to get vaccinated right now but she also has an obligation to inform the public if she is or isn’t. And if she isn’t she has the obligation to take all precautions not to spread COVID-19. Mask up, wear a mask and maintain social distancing.
    You can’t have it both ways.

  3. Wanda Simmons, I wish you the best with your health. Wanda, you made the choice to be a public be a elected offical and in doing so there’s a public platform that you are standing on and you have responsibilities. There are a number of things that you don’t understand, as a political person, you need to control your media cooments but instead you got upset at what a reporter wrote about you. Here are a few replies from Brian Lockhart to your FaceBook comments to him.

    Brian Lockhart,
    Thanks, Wanda! In the future, though, if you are going to respond to my questions on Facebook, let me know so I know where to look.Wanda Simmons.

    Wanda Simmons.
    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!If I text you a question and you respond on Facebook rather than texting me back that’s not gonna be helpful for either of us. Thanks again!

    Brian Lockhart
    And if I hadn’t seen your post on Facebook I’d have figured you were ignoring me and not added your additional comments to the article. So in the future if I text or phone you with questions, and you choose to instead respond on Facebook, please just let me know to look for it there so I don’t miss it. Thanks!

    Wanda, what the hell are you doing, you allowed your story to be told by somebody else, Brian Lockhart was doing his job he did a good job.

    Wanda, your comment about covid vaccine is a disgrace, you said, ““Do not allow my bout with COVID-19 scare you into getting vaccinated!!!,” Wanda what do you want people to do to protect theirself about COVID -19? Wanda, do trust your doctor, why in the world would you questioned vaccines?

  4. Comrades, this is a divisive political issue that borders lines on race, being how the (R’s) party is being portrayed in the media these days. Some of the posts and comments I read on posts regarding anti-vac Republicans were political in “nature” and quite disturbing, to say the least. That’s our current political game, and Wanda finds herself on the wrong side of the political spectrum on her view of vaccinations.

    I wouldn’t say, Wanda is completely right. I wouldn’t say you’re wrong either. However, Wanda is going against the grain of her party (D’s) stance on vaccination. This is very fluid in people’s perspectives based on how this is played out in the media, their party.

    I got mine, but I am not one for mandates by the government either, because that goal post has been moving. There was a time when having the kids go to school was a contentious issue. If you were against closing the schools that were considered reprehensible, even playing sports. We are in the same state regarding Covid today, yet no party line is saying close down the schools.

    To your point comrade, this is real, people are getting sick and dying from Covid. No anti-vac person who catches covid that ends up in the hospital refuse treatment. So I find it apocryphal to not want a preemptive treatment, vaccination. That being said there is no guarantee if you get vaccinated you get Covid or end up being hospitalized.

    Eventually, it will come down to choice. This virus acts more like the flu than polio, where it mutates, one-time vaccination is not going to end Covid. So vaccine mandates would have to be annual. This is why there is a booster shot for 65 older. It’s more of a getting vaccinated again in reality. People have to understand, A, Covid shot is like the flu shot. It has a shelf life and seems to be predominate during the flu season. B. Most of the who succumb to Covid are 65 and older. C. part of this mandate and push for vaccinating (I believe) is to try to eliminate it, or at least tweaking it where it can fade away on its own. A factor why I waited to get mine for the upcoming flu season.

    If this continues beyond this flu season. I highly doubt the government mandate will be in play and the revaccination rate and vaccination will dwindle, It will be based on choice. There have always been concerns of lone term exposure to vaccination over the years with regard to your body’s immune system’s ability to fight diseases. In the words of JML time will tell how this plays out.

    This has always been an aging virus, 95% are 60 or older who succumb to the virus. however, the age has been trending down as it mutates.

    Wanda, have a speedy recovery. Try to keep your immune system strong, people JS


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