Charles Barkley, NAACP support vaccines as Alabama hospitals inch closer to record hospitalizations

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LEE COUNTY, Alabama (WRBL) – The quest continues to get more COVID-19 vaccinations into the arms of Alabamians. State health officials announced Thursday; they expect Alabama hospitals will surpass an all-time high of COVID-19 hospitalizations in the next few days.

Now, the local chapter of the NAACP and an Auburn Legend are doing their part to save lives. In a video shared by Alabama Public Health, Sir Charles Barkley urges Auburn fans and others to get the vaccine.

“Hey Auburn nation, this season, let’s help Coach Harsin and Coach Pearl by safely packing Jordan Hare Stadium and Auburn Arena. Let’s all do our part. I received my vaccine; you need to get yours,” said Barkley.

The local chapter of the NAACP and the Lee County EMA is also stepping up by hosting a Community Vaccination Day at the Lee County Health Department next Thursday, August 19th. There is no appointment necessary. The vaccine is free.

“We got a low turnout of people getting vaccinated in the minority community. That concerns me,” said NAACP’s John Andrew Harris.

The goal is to get more shots in more arms, said Rita Smith with the Lee County Emergency Management Agency.

“So far, it’s been successful. We have had passed out through the NCAA about 500 flyers so far, we have done radio, print media, and now you, We are looking for a good turnout because they are Pfizer, and you know once you open that vaccine has to be used, and we don’t want to waste one of them. We have also passed out flyers to the Hispanic community, in Spanish,” said Smith.

NAACP’s John Andrew Harris is fully vaccinated, and so is his entire family. Harris said he had zero issues with the shot. However, Harris lost a dear friend to COVID, who was not vaccinated.

“Making the last plea to people I know and people I don’t know. Get the vaccine; the shot saves lives. Save our friends, save our family, save a child, save our community, please take the shot,” said Harris.

The Community Vaccination Day is happening Thursday, August 19th, at the Lee County Health Department, just down the street from the Lee County Sheriff’s Office. The doors open at 8 AM and close at 8 PM. Everyone over the age of 12 is welcome.

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