Mendocino County clarifies that logging sector, not lodging industry eligible for COVID vaccine

Mendocino County is allowing those who work in the logging industry to receive a coronavirus vaccine, clarifying that those employees are eligible after earlier mistakenly posting to its Facebook page that people in the “lodging” sector could receive such shots.

“We would like to clarify that this group (lodging) was erroneously included with the individuals currently eligible for vaccination,” said Mendocino County Public Health Officer Andrew Cohen in a news release.

The statement came as the county plans vaccination clinics Monday and Wednesday at the Redwood Empire Fairgrounds in Ukiah. They will be held for those in groups phase 1A and the tiers 1 and 2 of phase 1B, which includes agricultural and logging workers and those over 65 years of age.

“We are hoping that all the farmers, ranchers and food producers of Mendocino County will take advantage of the upcoming vaccine events,” said Darcie Antle, the county’s vaccine coordinator, in a statement.

Cohen also clarified about those in the lodging sector who could still receive a vaccine, specifically if they are in food service, which is already allowed under tier 1 of Phase 1B. “If there are lodging personnel who are directly involved in the preparation of food and/or food services, those persons are eligible for vaccinations now,” he said in his statement.

The difference in employment in the two sectors is stark within Mendocino County, especially as logging has receded over the decades along the North Coast and tourism jobs have steadily gained ground. There were 190 people employed in logging and mining within the county in December, according the state Employment Development Department. By contrast, the leisure and hospitality sector employed 2,790.

The county as of Saturday has provided 17,550 people with at least one dose of either Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine, according to the county’s website. That total does not include vaccines provided directly to hospitals and pharmacies.

There are an estimated 86,749 residents of Mendocino County as of July 1, 2019, according to the Census Bureau.

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