The mass COVID-19 vaccination site at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles shut down on Saturday afternoon after dozens of protesters blocked the entrance, preventing hundreds of people from receiving their vaccine after waiting in line for hours.
At Dodger’s Stadium this afternoon, police temporarily stopped vaccinations in response to around 40 anti-vaccine protesters at the entrance. pic.twitter.com/gyt0jut3ys
— Samuel Braslow (@SamBraslow) January 30, 2021
According to the Los Angeles Times, the protest included anti-vaxxers and far-right conspiracy theorists who crowded the entrance while people attempted to receive their vaccine. Some demonstrators carried signs claiming the coronavirus isn’t real, and pleaded to residents not to get the vaccine.
A social media post called the protest a “SCAMDEMIC PROTEST/MARCH.” “This is a sharing information protest and march against everything COVID, Vaccine, PCR Tests, Lockdowns, Masks, Fauci, Gates, Newsom, China, digital tracking, etc,” the post read, according to the Times.
Those seeking to get vaccinated are already facing a number of hurdles, including low supply, long wait times, and structural barriers leading to unequal distribution of the doses. Even though the protest didn’t get violent, the Los Angeles Fire Department closed the stadium entrance at around 2 p.m. as a precaution. The vaccine site is typically open until 8 p.m. The LAPD announced on Twitter that "all scheduled vaccines will be delivered."
We are aware of social media posts referring to protestors showing up at the Dodger Stadium COVID-19 vaccination site. Preliminary reports are that protestors remained peaceful. The LAPD did NOT close the gates, and per LA City Fire, all scheduled vaccines will be delivered. https://t.co/l5zEW3UAOt
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) January 31, 2021
LAPD tweeted that they did not shut the gates at Dodgers’ Stadium. It appears that LA Fire Department may have closed the gates, but when asked who was in charge, an LAPD officer said, “I’m in charge, so right now [the gate is] going to stay closed until I get further info.” https://t.co/ePB3RUQJlU pic.twitter.com/6tzomnG8xI
— Samuel Braslow (@SamBraslow) January 31, 2021
One California resident, German Jaquez, waited for an hour before the stadium’s gates were closed.
“This is the wrong message,” Jaquez said. “I’ve been waiting for weeks to get an appointment. I am a dentist; I am taking a big risk being around patients. I want to be safe for my patients and for my family. The vaccine is the only way to beat the virus.”
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