WASHINGTON, DC – Farmers never hesitate to roll up their sleeves alongside their employees in the field. Now, many are doing that in COVID-19 vaccination clinics across the country – or even on the farm.
North Carolina Farm Bureau President and farmer Shawn Harding shared a video documenting his vaccine experience. As part of its effort to promote farmer and employee vaccinations and awareness, North Carolina Farm Bureau posted the video to its social media accounts with links to several resources.
In Idaho, Mickelsen Farms partnered with local health officials and an urgent care center to have more than 350 of their employees vaccinated in four hours.
These are some of the stories American Farm Bureau Federation (afbf) President Zippy Duvall shared with Vice President Kamala Harris at the launch of the COVID-19 Community Corps, a public education campaign to increase vaccine confidence. AFBF is a founding member.
Launched on April 1, the initiative is intended to increase public confidence in and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines while reinforcing basic prevention measures such as mask wearing and social distancing. The campaign utilizes a network of trusted messengers, like AFBF, to help the public make informed decisions about their health and COVID-19, including steps to protect themselves and their communities.
For farmers, ranchers and other rural business owners who aren’t sure how to approach the topic of vaccines with their employees, the Health Action Alliance(HAA), a joint partnership between leading business and public health organizations, is focused on working directly with businesses to reach employees and share information about COVID-19 vaccine options, answer tough questions and help individuals make the choice that is right for them and their families.
HAA’s Small Business Guide includes concrete steps owners can take to champion vaccines through vaccination plans and community engagement. Specifically, the guide will help small business owners:
Communicate with employees, workers and customers about the safety and benefits of COVID-19 vaccines and reinforce the importance of masking, social distancing and avoiding crowds to prevent the spread.
Make a plan to help employees and workers get vaccinated when it’s their turn, including offering paid time off, transportation credits, childcare or small incentives to workers who choose to get vaccinated.
Strengthen the vaccination efforts of broader communities by offering to help public health departments, nonprofit organizations and others involved in the vaccine response.
In addition, HAA has prepared a Conversation Guide for Small Business Owners to help them engage in productive conversations about vaccines with their employees and workers, along with sample communications tools to support their outreach, including staff emails, social media tools, audience insights and other materials. They also offer workshops and events to help business leaders prepare their employees and workers for vaccines.
More resources are available in the small business section of HAA’s website.