Decatur is offering an incentive package to get vaccinated for COVID-19 as an encouragement for hesitant city employees, especially first responders.
The DeKalb County city is offering extra vacation time, health insurance credits and raffled gift cards to try to increase vaccination rates. Fewer than half of the city’s 150 first responders — police officers, firefighters and public works employees — have gotten vaccinated, Deputy City Manager Hugh Saxon told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
He estimated that 40-45% of them have chosen to get vaccinated, despite all first responders having ample opportunity to get vaccinated as part of the state’s vaccine rollout plan. The lagging percentage mirrors a problem many metro Atlanta counties and cities are encountering among frontline government employees.
“There’s hesitancy everywhere, which is unfortunate given the consequences of the pandemic,” he said. “I think there’s been a lot of misinformation about (the vaccines).”