Immigrants in Jacksonville desperate to get a COVID-19 vaccine, but were concerned about information

Faced with several obstacles, we spoke to a man who was just becoming a US citizen.

He says he’s ready to get the shot and wants to make sure his community can. also.

Khawaja Seviqi, or Hashmat, says he wants his Jacksonville community to get out of the pandemic by rolling up his sleeve.

“I hope I can get it asap,” said Seviqi.

But he says his community and other minorities are unaware of how to get the vaccine.

When asked if the government and the city gave the minorities enough information about the vaccine, he said “no”.

Basma Alawee of the Florida Immigrant Coalition said communities of colored people face language barriers, lack of transportation, concerns about costs and health insurance and a lack of information.

FEMA vaccination centers claim they have sign language interpreters, Haitian Creole and Spanish translators, remote video interpreters and voice translation services for all languages.

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“Some of the concerns we’ve heard are, will my citizenship status affect my ability to give the vaccine?” Said Alawee.

The Biden Administrations COVID-19 vaccination schedule states that “all people in the US, regardless of their immigrant status, can access the vaccine for free and without sharing the cost”.

Hashmat said he knows a lot of people in his community who want the vaccine and will help them get it.

“Our community, our people, we always help each other. And if, for example, someone calls me to translate for them, I will definitely help them, ”said Seviqi.

Alawee said we all need to make sure every community is involved.

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