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Black Lives Don’t Matter in US COVID-19 vaccination drive

New York: A racial gap has appeared in the COVID-19 vaccination drive in the United States, with African Americans lagging behind in terms of receiving jabs, according to a recent analysis by the Associated Press.

The study showed that in the 17 sample states and two sample cities, African Americans were inoculated at levels below their share of population, “in some cases significantly below,” said the report.

In North Carolina, where black people make up 22 percent of the population, they account for only 11 percent of the vaccine recipients. In comparison, white people, including both Hispanic and non-Hispanic whites in the state, are 68 percent of the population and 82 percent of those vaccinated, local media reported.

“We’re going to see a widening and exacerbation of the racial health inequities … if our communities cannot access the vaccines,” said Uche Blackstock, a New York emergency physician.

In New York City, nearly half of the residents who received a COVID-19 vaccination shot were white, more than double any minority group in the city, according to data released late Sunday by city health officials.

Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers have received shots since December, with whites accounting for 48 percent. Blacks received 11 percent of the doses, while 15 percent went to Asians and another 15 percent to Latinos in the city, reported the Wall Street Journal on Monday.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the data highlighted a “profound problem” of racial inequity and the coronavirus pandemic. Blacks and Latinos in the United States have been killed by COVID-19 at more than twice the rate of white residents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“The disparity is very plain. It has to be addressed forcefully,” de Blasio said at a press conference on Sunday.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday called on member states to make vaccine solidarity a top priority and underlined the UN’s commitment to promoting tolerance and ending white supremacy

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