By Tori Mason

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – Earlier this month, the state’s Vaccine Equity Task Force began its outreach efforts to people of color. So far, 376,000 Coloradans have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Nearly 70% of the people who received those vaccines are white.

As of Jan. 24, less than 5% of all Coloradans vaccinated are Hispanic. Less than 2% are Black. A CDPHE survey showed almost half of Black and Latino Coloradans were not willing to get the vaccine in September.

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(credit: CBS)

Jefferson County is working to make the vaccine more accessible for people of color.

“There’s a lot of misinformation going around the community about vaccines. What we’re looking for is to help with understanding and knowledge so they can make the best decisions for their families,” said Paulina Erices, Community Inclusion Program Manager for Jefferson County Public Health.

Depending on the population, Erices says Jefferson County has different strategies to increase outreach as the vaccines become available. Right now, their focus is on residents 70 years and older.

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“Some may not have access to transportation or the internet for an online registration system. We are looking to inform and provide those resources to those 70 and older, but also their caregivers. We’re also working with childcare centers, so they can share the information. We know that a lot of grandparents are caring for their grandchildren. Through them, we can create access to information and resources, “said Erices.

(credit: CBS)

Jefferson County Public Health hosts weekly virtual panels with Latino leaders to help educate the community. Their team also consists of four local ambassadors who provide one-on-one help for people seeking access to vaccine resources.

“Jefferson County has been connecting with community ambassadors. It makes us very proud to be able to provide information and access to people who can help them register for those vaccines, especially on a population 70 and older,” said Erices

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LINK: Jefferson County’s COVID Response

Tori Mason