ARIZONA NEWS

Mesa Mayor Giles joins nationwide COVID-19 vaccination challenge

Jun 7, 2021, 4:35 AM
(Facebook photo/Mayor John Giles)...
(Facebook photo/Mayor John Giles)
(Facebook photo/Mayor John Giles)

PHOENIX — Mesa Mayor John Giles has joined a challenge with mayors from more than 80 cities nationwide to see which city can grow its COVID-19 vaccination rate the most by the Fourth of July.

“I think this is the most important cause we can be involved in right now,” Giles told KTAR News 92.3 FM. “We are trying to get over the finish line on getting back to normal and creating herd immunity.”

The challenge is part of President Joe Biden’s National Month of Action to mobilize a sprint to get 70% of U.S. adults at least one COVID-19 vaccine shot by July 4.

Giles is the only mayor in Arizona so far to take part in the challenge, which is being run in collaboration with the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

Mayors who participate in the challenge commit to taking actions through the month to boost vaccinations, including coordinated canvassing efforts, partnerships with local businesses and incentives for residents.

Maricopa County’s COVID-19 vaccination dashboard shows 46.8% of Mesa’s eligible population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. This includes not only the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines – which have been approved for those over the age of 18 – but also the Pfizer vaccine that was recently approved for children as young as 12.

Giles said the city has seen a stall in the vaccination progress recently as supply caught up and exceeded demand.

“I think everyone who was anxious to get the vaccination has received it and now it’s time to do the hard work of getting it out and making it easy, getting it out to people who may have some questions about it or that might need a little persuading,” Giles said.

“This is where we need to all engage in persuasion and setting good examples and making things easy and incentivizing and doing all we can to create herd immunity in our community.”

He hopes the vaccination effort shifting to a local approach – such as vaccines being available in drug stores, doctor’s offices and local events – will help make more progress on the way to herd immunity.

“We just need to remind people don’t do it for yourself, do it for your family, do it for your children that haven’t been vaccinated, do it for the rest of the community that wants to get back to normal and we can’t until we create herd immunity,” Giles said.

The winning cities will be recognized later this year.

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Griselda Zetino contributed to this report.

Arizona News

(Cave Creek Museum Photo)...
KTAR.com

Cave Creek Museum to kick off 2021-2022 season this October

The Cave Creek Museum is set to kick off the 2021-2022 season this October with new collections, exhibits and special events, officials announced.
9 hours ago
(Photo courtesy of the city of Glendale)...
SuElen Rivera

Downtown Glendale launches mobile app to navigate city, benefit merchants

The Glendale Chamber of Commerce on Thursday launched a mobile app intended to help visitors in Downtown Glendale navigate around shops and merchants promote their products.
9 hours ago
Phoenix Fire Department photo...
KTAR.com

Firefighters rescue injured hiker on South Mountain in helicopter

A man who fell six feet during his hike on South Mountain got transported via a helicopter to a local ambulance.
1 day ago
Near 12th Street and Northern Avenue, Phoenix. (Twitter Photo/@Crossfire923)...
SuElen Rivera

Parts of Valley sees light showers, more chances of rain this weekend

As monsoon season wraps up, parts of the Valley received some rain Friday evening heading into the weekend.
1 day ago
A woman gets a COVID-19 Pfizer booster shot in the "Im Lauesch" nursing home of Strasbourg, eastern...
KTAR.com

Arizona reports 2,916 new COVID-19 cases, 69 more deaths Saturday

Arizona health officials on Saturday reported 2,916 new COVID-19 cases and 69 additional deaths from the disease.
1 day ago
Office Kyle Trouton (Peoria Police Department Photo)...
SuElen Rivera

Peoria police officer catches man who jumped from 2nd story of burning home

Police in Peoria said one of their own rescued a man who jumped from the balcony of a burning home.
1 day ago
Mesa Mayor Giles joins nationwide COVID-19 vaccination challenge