The Covid-19 vaccine has emerged as a beacon of hope during this uncertain time, and Nevada firefighters have been at the forefront helping in their off-hours to assist as many community members as possible. But when Governor Sisolak recently shared concern regarding unequal distribution of the vaccine across social and ethnic lines, North Las Vegas firefighters took even more action.
Over the course of three days, they set up an extensive pop-up outreach event in collaboration with the City of North Las Vegas, the Southern Nevada Health District and the Equal Opportunity Board to help deliver vaccinations to the underserved population at the recently completed MLK Senior Center in North Las Vegas.
“I believe collaboration is king,” said Nino Galloway, firefighter for Local 1607 in North Las Vegas. “Because of our already existing relationships and outreach programs, we were able to shift quickly. With North Las Vegas Fire Chief Calhoun, the union, the firefighters, and the vaccine system we have, we were set to go.”
February 10 and 11, 2021, they administered 1,000 vaccines to eager community members, who may not have access otherwise. With only 40% of the staff of other vaccination locations, your local firefighters were still able to administer nearly the same amount of vaccines.
And they weren’t alone. Their quick thinking and efficient efforts got the attention of Clark County Commission Chairman Marilyn Kirkpatrick, Clark County Commissioner representing District D William McCurdy II, and North Las Vegas Council Member Pamela Goynes-Brown as well as local press, who were excited to witness what can happen when community heroes do what they do best—protect.
“This is a phenomenal time for our community,” said McCurdy at the event on February 11th. “This is actually the first step to making sure we get our economy back to a place of normalcy and ultimately protect our residents.”
“There is no success without collaboration and community,” McCurdy continued. “For me, having the firefighters here representing North Las Vegas is incredibly impactful because firefighters are the friendly face many of our residents see when they are at their most vulnerable.”
And the firefighters don’t plan on stopping their outreach anytime soon. They will continue to deliver the vaccine as quickly as possible and plan more pop-up events like the one at the MLK Senior Center.
“As long as we have facilities like this, the more we can connect and provide to our communities, especially to those that are more vulnerable,” stated Galloway.