Suffolk County announced a campaign Tuesday to encourage residents to take the Covid-19 vaccine when it becomes available.
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said the campaign, “#Take Your Shot,” will educate residents on the importance of receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, and ask them to commit to taking the vaccine.
The county’s “#Take Your Shot” initiative will be a multifaceted, multimedia campaign that will incorporate social media, paid digital advertising, and community members, with the goal of securing pledges from at least 850,000 County residents to commit to receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.
“The arrival of the COVID-19 vaccine signals the ending of this pandemic, but it will only work if the majority of our residents participate,” Bellone said. “Getting vaccinated is not only critical to protecting the health and safety of our communities, but is vital in our continued economic recovery, and keeping our businesses and schools open. Our goal is to vaccinate more than 850,000 County residents, and over the next 100 days we will work tirelessly to spread the word that this vaccine is safe, effective and will save lives.”
Suffolk County will use resources from the Health Department, Police Department, Department of Fire, Rescue, and Emergency Services, the Office of Minority Affairs, and Suffolk311 to engage directly with residents regarding the efficacy and safety of the vaccine. It will use $50,000 in funding for a paid advertising campaign incorporating digital radio advertisements featuring trusted health leaders, such as the County Health Commissioner, social media ads, billboard signs, and more.
And the county will collaborate with outside organizations to reach targeted communities, including communities of color who have been especially hard hit by the pandemic.
Tracy Edwards, Long Island Regional Director of the NAACP, said: “As the NAACP Long Island Regional Director, I believe that all people need to take this vaccine. I understand the skepticism and the history, but all of us, collectively, have been through a lot. We need to do our research on the vaccine and do what we can to protect ourselves, our families, and our communities. The best way we will be able to do that is by taking our shot.”
The first batch of vaccines arrived in New York last week with Northwell nurse Sandra Lindsay receiving the first vaccination.