curated by Emerald Staff
A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle!
Vaccines: Here’s the Latest — UPDATED 4/7 @ 11:30 a.m.
This Week, the City Will Vaccinate a Record 30K People — The City of Seattle will administer approximately 30,000 vaccines across multiple sites this week including Lumen Field Event Center, the Rainier Beach and West Seattle Community Vaccination Hubs, and via Seattle Fire Department Mobile Vaccination Teams (MVTs), which will visit locations where formerly homeless adults live in permanent supportive housing. The MVTs will also administer second-dose shots to older adults living in affordable housing.
The Phased Roll-Out, Where Are We? — Washington is currently in Phase 1B – All Tiers of the State’s vaccine roll-out plan, meaning the following are eligible to get the vaccine now: 60-plus; 16-plus with two-plus co-morbidities; folks who live/work in congregate living and in places homeless people live/access services; and high-risk critical workers, however, proof of eligibility is no longer required to get a vaccine. (The phased roll-out plan is available in Spanish.)
On April 15, all Washingtonians 16 years and older will become eligible. Everyone is encouraged to follow the roll-out plan until then (in other words, don’t jump the line). Those eligible now should first check with their primary care provider, and if they can’t get an appointment, they can sign up for the City of Seattle vaccine notification list; check with International Community Health Services’ (ICHS) New Holly and Bush Asia Center locations; call UW Medicine (844-520-8700) to get on their waitlist; or use the State’s Vaccine Locator to find a provider. SeaMar also offers vaccines at their South Park location. Go to their website to find a list of same-day vaccine availability at their locations (they do walk-ins, so plan to arrive early and wait in line if you plan to go on April 15 or beyond). For help navigating ICHS’s online scheduler, go to our Vaccine Eligibility and Appointments for South Seattleites page (and scroll down the page).
I’m Eligible on April 15, Can I Schedule an Appointment Now? — If I’m eligible on April 15, can I make an appointment for that date — or beyond — ahead of time? If not, then should we all prepare to clamor and compete for appointments the day we all become eligible? Or should we hold steady and be patient, resting assured we will all get our vaccines in good time?
As with most things COVID and COVID-vaccine related, the answer is complicated and the available resources a bit confusing.
Most government resources will advise you to use the State’s Vaccine Locator to find a provider. But most providers at this time seem to only be connecting people with appointments if they’re eligible in the current phase. That said, the City of Seattle has notably updated their vaccine notification registration form to remove some of the eligibility requirements that previously prevented many people from getting on their appointment waitlist. Anyone 16 and over who lives in King County can now sign up to receive a notification from the City when an appointment becomes available.
Presumably, those who will not be eligible for the vaccine until April 15 will not be notified of available appointments before then (meaning allocation will still be prioritized for those who are currently eligible), but the form does not explicitly say that. At any rate, this means that all King County residents (16 and older) can now get on the City’s list to get a vaccine appointment as soon as possible, which will be a relief to anyone who has not found another option to take any present action toward getting their vaccine.
Vaccine availability will likely continue to be somewhat precarious, but supplies have increased exponentially and Washington vaccine providers are ramping up their efforts to meet demand. Some people already have appointments with local clinics for April 15 and beyond. For those feeling impatient (or proactive, if you prefer), there are options. Recently, International Community Health Services’ (ICHS) Solv online appointment scheduler revealed appointments for mid-April beginning on April 15. They were snatched up quickly, but it’s indicative that some vaccine providers are already scheduling appointments for later this month. Maybe one of them will be yours!
New COVID Testing Facility at SeaTac
According to a press release from the Port of Seattle, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport will open XpresCheck COVID-19 testing site with ability to administer 500 COVID-19 tests per day on Wednesday, April 7. This first XpresCheck testing facility on the West Coast will be located in pre-security on the baggage claim level, near Carousel 9. The facility will use both rapid molecular and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) COVID-19 tests. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) currently recommends that only vaccinated people travel domestically by air But if air travel is essential, get tested with a viral test 1–3 days before your trip, then get a viral test 3–5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel — even if your test comes back negative. Those who are vaccinated and travel by air should still wear masks and sanitize hands frequently, the CDC says.
Africatown Call for Artists
Africatown Community Land Trust has a call out for artists to submit work for its new Africatown Plaza project in the heart of the Central District. They’re looking for “an integrated collection focused on healing, retoring, and celebrating Black and Pan-African communities in the Central District of Seattle.” In a Twitter post, Africatown says: “We’re talking about traditional and non-traditional art, mixtapes, murals, virtual art, and more (yes, we want allllat).” You can send a message via Africatown’s website.
Join the Beacon Arts Guild, Request for Proposals, Plus — Garden Shares/Foster Farmers, and Bees!
Beacon Arts is buzzing with activity. The arts council is recruiting for their Arts Guild and requests proposals from the artist community, asking “Do you have a passion for arts and culture you would like to see happen on Beacon Hill but don’t know where to start? We can help.” Outreach, networks, grants, fiscal sponsorship, and more — Beacon Arts wants to hook you up.
This Saturday, April 10 — and every second Saturday through September — Beacon Arts’ Garden Club will be at The Station coffee shop from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for their Garden Share events. This weekend, Garden Club members and volunteer “Foster Farmers” will have free seeds and plant starts including pansies, veggies, lilacs, herbs, plus yellow transparent apple saplings, and even some house plants. Experienced gardeners will be available to answer questions and offer support to budding gardeners. This month the club event will also feature free mason bees — “stingless, friendly native pollinators still in their cocoons.” Does your garden need bees? Sure it does!
King County Zero Youth Detentions Seeks Nominations for Workgroup Facilitators
Thanks to King County Councilmember Girmay Zahilay on Twitter (you are following Girmay, right?) for posting recently that King County Zero Youth Detention is reaching out to members of the community to join a series of workgroups to help shape the Regional Community Safety & Well-being Plan. Both participants and facilitators will be compensated.
If you think you’d be a good facilitator for one of these workgroups or know someone in your community who would be great, you can participate or nominate at the King County Zero Youth Detention workgroup site. The workgroup topics are community safety, education, workforce development, health & human services, and juvenile justice.
United Way Seeks Volunteers to Deliver Meals to Kids
United Way of King County is looking for volunteers to drive and deliver school lunches to children living at Greenbridge in White Center. As a volunteer, you will report to Greenbridge once per week for ten weeks to pick up meals from your site address, drive the meals to families in the Greenbridge community, and work in pairs to deliver the meals to doorsteps through no-contact delivery (may sign up with a friend or family member). United Way of King County will provide PPE (gloves and masks) for all volunteers and provide on-site training and guidance while practicing social distancing at all times.
For more information, visit United Way of King County’s Volunteer Opportunities webpage or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Earth Day Beacon Hill Aviation and Health Zoom Rally
El Centro De La Raza will host a free Earth Day Aviation and Health “Zoom Rally” on Saturday, April 10 at 1:30 p.m. Residents of communities impacted by aircraft noise, including but not limited to Beacon Hill, are encouraged to attend. Attendees will get updates on related legislation and health impacts.
Beacon Hill residents are familiar with the air and noise pollution from Interstate 5 and traffic in and out of nearby airports Boeing Field and SeaTac, particularly SeaTac as the neighborhood is directly in the flight path of the majority of landing aircraft. “There are efforts to reduce pollution/greenhouse gas emission from roads, but not from aircraft emission,” says Maria Batayola, El Centro Environmental Justice Coordinator and chair of the Beacon Hill Council. “These emissions affect the 30,000+ Beacon Hill residents, the quarter million residents living around SeaTac Airport, and those living under flight paths. These communities all have significant People of Color and immigrant residents.”
Participants of the Zoom rally will watch a short film, hear from U.S. Rep. Adam Smith, Washington State Sen. Rebecca Saldaña, and King County Councilmembers Joe McDermott and Girmay Zahilay as well as public health experts and more. There is also time built in for a community conversation. Attend all or part of the three-hour event.
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