HENNEPIN COUNTY, Minn. — In an effort to encourage people to get their COVID-19 vaccine, the Hennepin Board of Commissioners today voted unanimously to approve $100,000 for vaccine incentive programs thorough a board action request brought forward by Commissioner Chris LaTondresse. Through a statement, he mentioned that the approval of the funds would help address vaccination disparities in the county.
“Vaccine incentive programs are designed to build trust and increase vaccination rates. This action is an opportunity to build on Minnesota's statewide vaccine incentive strategy in a way that's specifically tailored to the unique needs and concerns of Hennepin County residents. For us this means addressing vaccine disparities in our highest social vulnerability index zip codes," said LaTondresse in his statement.
According to a press release from the board, the funds will come from the Coronavirus Local Fiscal Recovery Fund which was authorized by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. In their proposal, the board proposed the following vaccination incentive measures.
- Partnering with community groups to host vaccine events and to support the provision of free meals, groceries or entertainment.
- Distributing "Thank You" packages, of which will be personalized to the targeted population and event. Community-based businesses may be prioritized for the contents of the "Thank You" packs.
This is in addition to the "Your Shot to Summer" vaccine rewards program launched by the State of Minnesota, which is available to the first 100,000 Minnesotans, ages 12 and older, to have received their vaccines. Information about the first shot must also be submitted between June 1 and June 30. More information about the program can be found here.