Anti-Vaccine protestors temporarily shut down large US COVID-19 vaccination site


Source: Los Angeles Times

Ariana Bruno, Writer

On Saturday, a group of anti-vax protesters temporarily shut down a COVID-19 vaccination site at LA’s Dodgers Stadium. This caused appointments to be delayed by an hour.

About 50 protesters gathered at the entrance, holding up signs with anti-mask and anti-vaccine display with some that said “Trust in God, not Vaccines” “Forced Vax = Fascism” and “COVID = Scam.” According to reports, these protesters were yelling at people in cars who were waiting for their appointment. According to the Los Angeles Fire Department, no vaccine appointments were canceled, only delayed.

During this protest, the police we aware of the issue happening. The LAPD told protesters that they had to leave by 3 p.m., citing it as a “peaceful protest”, so nobody was arrested and no crimes were committed. Social media posts and live streams from the protest showed participants waving around signs, and even attempting to engage with people in cars who were on their way to get their vaccine.

Dodger Stadium is one of the largest vaccination places in the country, currently serving a region with a stronger and deadly wave COVID-19.

State officials denounced the protest. LA city council President Nury Martinez called the protests and demonstrations “unbelievable.” Dr. Richard Pan, a pediatrician, and California state senator, also gave his opinion on the protest. He described the protesters as, “extremists using intimidation and violence to further their false beliefs.” According to Pan, anti-vaccine protestors have regularly disrupted the California assembly in recent years, resulting in Pan getting assaulted by an activist back in 2019.

As of Saturday, January 30, there were 5,669 people hospitalized with coronavirus in Los Angeles. Though, more than 1.1 million cases and 16,647 deaths were recorded in the country since the pandemic began. Earlier this month, anti-maskers called COVID a “con job” and proceeded to harass shoppers at an LA mall and grocery store.

Currently, residents over the age of 65 and older, healthcare workers, and nursing facility staff are being vaccinated. However, COVID-19 cases have been on the rise in LA. 1 out of 9 residents are being tested positive for COVID-19, and at least one death is recorded in the country every 10 minutes.