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Bowser Talks Vaccine Distribution, Capitol Fencing

In Monday’s situational update, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser (D), DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson and Dr. LaQuandra Nesbitt spoke about COVID-19, weather and Capitol Fencing updates for the District.

COVID-19 Updates

As of Monday morning, the District has received more than 83,000 doses of the vaccine from the federal government and over 62,000 have already been administered.

In addition to those previously eligible for the vaccine, this week it will become available to licensed child care providers and the teachers and staff of independent schools in DC.

Today, as term three at the DC Public Schools (DCPS) began, all members of the teaching and support staff have been offered the opportunity to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Approximately 3,100 faculty members have received their first does of the vaccine. Additionally, asymptomatic testing measures are in place and the HVAC systems in DCPS have been upgraded in preparation for the return of students to in person classrooms this week.

All public COVID-19 testing sites will be closed today due to winter weather conditions.

Vaccine Priority 

On Thursdays starting at 9:00 a.m., vaccination appointments will become available to those in priority zip codes. Priority zip codes will include areas of DC that have been disproportionately impacted by the [pandemic.

This week’s zip codes will cover wards 5, 7 and 8 and residents in those areas will have priority access to appointments this Thursday.

Winter Weather 

Bowser encouraged all Washingtonians to be vigilant for those experiencing homelessness in these cold conditions. She encouraged everyone to call (202-399-7093) to request transportation for neighbors in need of shelter from the cold.

DCPS is also closed today due to the weather.

Capitol Fencing 

Mendelson spoke about the increased complication associated with the DC Council delivering legislation to Congress for approval. He emphasized that the process this new year has been a “frustrating” one with the increased levels of security established in the wake of the Jan. Capitol insurrection.

“We cannot get through the fence; literally,” Mendelson said.

Bowser said she does not believe that there has been adequate “transparency” with the Capitol security and closures and said she doesn’t want the fencing and closures to “creep” into the DC streets and neighborhoods.

“We have to better understand how the Congress is reimagining its security,” Bowser said.

Sarah Payne is a History and Neuroscience student at The University of Michigan interning with HillRag. She writes for and serves as an assistant news editor for Michigan’s student newspaper, The Michigan Daily. You can reach her at sarahp@hillrag.com.

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