CHICAGO (CBS) — Next month, the city of Chicago will offer “Vax Passes.”
They will allow vaccinated people to attend certain concerts and events. More details on how it works are expected in the next few weeks.
Asked about the city’s “Vax Pass” initiative, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said the city is “constantly looking at ways in which we can incentivize folks to get the vaccine.”
“We’re going to be looking at ways in which we can incentivize people to get vaccinated, and do that by looking at preferred seating, preferred admission. So that’s still very much a work in progress, and we’ll have more to say on that in the coming days,” she said.
The mayor said vaccinations among the city’s Black population are still lagging behind every other demographic.
“So we really need – particularly 18 to 44, where we’re seeing the lowest uptake – we need you to get vaccinated. Do it, of course, for yourself; but for your family, for your grandparents,” Lightfoot said. “There’s plenty of opportunity now all over the city to get vaccinated for free – let me emphasize that, for free. So don’t be a bystander. Get in the game. Get yourself vaccinated.”
On Tuesday, Doctor Allison Arwady, head of the Chicago Department of Public Health, said the “Vax Pass” is another way to convince people to get the COVID shot.
“Younger people in particular may be excited about the idea of getting into events for example that might be limited to people who are vaccinated,” Arwady said. “So we’re exploring some possibilities of concerts or events that might not be just youth focus, but would probably have a youth flavor to it. We’re working with some club organizers and others and there will be more information coming.”
Arwady added that the city is working on another vaccine-related initiative called “Vax and Relax” that could provide special offers for people who’ve already gotten their shot.
“Working with the barbershops and beauty salons nail salons. The main incentive, I would hope is to get a vaccine, but if I had the opportunity to get a free haircut or get my nails done in this sort of more of a like let’s celebrate the fact that this is how we are going to get past COVID,” Arwady said.
She added that the outreach to get more people to get the COVID vaccine is to possibly go to where they are.
“Where are places you’re waiting? You might wait at a laundromat. It’s not that they’ve said I don’t want to get a vaccine it’s just maybe not first on their list of things to do,” Arwady said. “Thinking of creative ways to get the vaccine available where people are anyway, is really going to be central to some of our strategy.”