‘We’re risking our lives’: California’s slow vaccine rollout leaves essentia …

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Pharmacy workers helping maskless customers. Uber drivers transporting coughing passengers. Janitors cleaning contaminated workspaces.

Amid California’s slow Covid-19 vaccine rollout, millions of essential workers in high-exposure jobs are still waiting to get the life-saving doses, with many uncertain when or how they will get access.

“We’re risking our lives so that the community can have what they need, and it feels like they don’t really care about us,” said Lauren Alcala, a clerk at a CVS store in South Los Angeles.

Alcala, 26, was was hospitalized with Covid last summer. She lives with her mother, grandmother and other older relatives – and is petrified of getting infected again and bringing Covid home. “I don’t think it’s fair,” she said of her wait for the vaccine. “Many of us deal with so much anxiety and stress at work.”

California, the largest state in the US, has administered more than 7.3m vaccine doses but is lagging behind other states in vaccine administration. Eligibility is due to dramatically expand in March, but with supplies limited and many

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