Free vaccines, boosters given to hispanic, latino communities in SLC

SALT LAKE CITY — Thursday night’s Conmemoración del Grito de Independencia de México was a celebration, but also an opportunity to educate and arm Spanish-speakers with the tools they need to keep fighting COVID-19.

“This is where they feel more comfortable,” said Brandy Farmer, President of Centro Cívico Mexicano. “It’s important for us to have COVID vaccines here with within our community to bring it to them, because sometimes they feel uncomfortable going to the health department or to a pharmacy or some other place.”

During the Independence Day celebrations, the Salt Lake County Health Department’s Mobile Health Center parked outside the Centro Cívico Méxicano and gave free COVID vaccines and boosters.

“From grocery stores, to libraries and Latin American restaurants, for the past year, the county has been getting creative, bringing vaccines and boosters into these communities,” said spokesperson for the Health Department Gabriel Moreno.

“At the moment, around 41 percent of those who self-identify as Hispanic or Latin, they have been vaccinated,” he said. “But only around 19 percent of them are up to date on their vaccinations.”

Distrust in the government and lack of health literacy can make Spanish-speakers hesitant to get vaccinated, said Moreno.

“As someone who came to this country many years ago and did not speak any English, I think it’s critical to have individuals working in the field that look like them, that speak their language, just so we’re comfortable,” he said.

Brandy Farmer anticipates 1,000 people will come to Thursday’s celebration, and she hopes in the joy of music and dance, people will consider sparing a few minutes for a shot in the arm.

“It’s my heritage because I’m Mexican-American,” she said. “And this is a safe place for our people to be here. This is actually the touchstone of the Hispanic community.”

There are several free vaccine and booster clinics all over Salt Lake County every week. Here are the following dates, times and locations for the next two weeks:

Tuesday, September 20
3-6 pm Rancho Markets (Rose Park), 140 North 900 West, Salt Lake City

Wednesday, Sep 21
12-3 p.m. Millcreek City Hall, 3330 South 1300 East, Millcreek

Thursday, Sep 22
11am-2pm Reams Grocery Store, 7325 West 3500 South, Magna

Friday, Sep 23
10 am-1 pm Antojito’s Dona Julia Mexican Restaurant, 1447 West 1000 North, Salt Lake City
3-5 pm Dancing Moose Montessori School, 4428 Left Drive, West Valley City

Saturday, September 24th
9 am-2 pm South Main Public Health Center, 3690 South Main Street, South Salt Lake
9 am-2 pm South Redwood Public Health Center, 7971 South 1825 West, West Jordan

Thursday, Sep 29
5-8pm Kearns Library, 4275 West 5345 South, Kearns

Saturday, October 1st
9 a.m.-2 p.m. South Main Public Health Center, 3690 South Main Street, South Salt Lake
9 am-2 pm South Redwood Public Health Center, 7971 South 1825 West, West Jordan

No ID or insurance is required, and immigration status does not matter. You can learn more at saltlakehealth.org or make an appointment at (385) 468-SHOT (7468).

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