What’s the best way to extend the lifespan of this global pandemic? A vaccine that isn’t available to everyone, everywhere. 

A safe, effective vaccine is a major key to defeating the coronavirus and reopening the global economy, but only if the most vulnerable, everywhere, have access to it. When a vaccine is available, it’s all but certain that there won’t be enough supply to protect everyone in the country, let alone the world. That’s why the US must help ensure that the most vulnerable people - from frontline workers to the immunocompromised - have priority access to the vaccine regardless of whether they live in St. Albans or Nairobi. 

Americans across the country agree. According to a new poll by The ONE Campaign, 83 percent of registered voters believe health care workers, the elderly and at-risk groups anywhere in the world should be the first to get a COVID-19 vaccine, before healthy people in the US. And over two-thirds of voters are more likely to vote for a candidate who has a global plan to defeat COVID-19 and work with other countries to develop and deploy a coronavirus vaccine. Supporting a fair and globally accessible vaccine isn’t just smart policy, it’s also smart politics. 

As I prepare to cast my vote, I’ll be paying close attention to whether candidates like Incumbent Representative Welch and other candidates for Congress commit to funding proven global health programs like Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the Global Fund, and CEPI, which are key to ending this global pandemic everywhere.

William Valliere

St. Albans

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