Cement company gets good response to staff vaccinationThursday, August 05, 2021
BY CANDICE HAUGHTON
THE Caribbean Company yesterday got a positive response from staff for its vaccination drive, which saw dozens of employees turning up at the Girl Guides Association of Jamaica offices in St Andrew to get their COVID-19 jab.
It was part of an initiative by the Private Sector Organisation (PSOJ) and the Government, in an effort to get more people immunised with the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
The company's communication and social impact coordinator, Chad Bryan, told the Jamaica Observer that while vaccination is not mandatory, the company has been encouraging staff to get the jab. Additionally, Bryan said the health and safety of employees are important to the company, hence the reason to have staff vaccinated against the virus which has already killed more than 1,000 Jamaicans.
“... Approximately half of the population of the workforce has expressed interest in being vaccinated,” Bryan said, noting that the company's population is 213 employees.
He continued: “We are ensuring that not only are our employees protected at the plant, but they are also protected from the disease that's posing a threat. Health and safety is very paramount at our location, so we [want to] ensure that... everybody adheres strictly to behaviours that save lives.”
With doors opened to those who wish to get their first or second dose of the vaccine, Bryan said the process for taking the vaccine at their site was “smooth”.
Fitzroy Riley, an employee for approximately 17 years, said that he made the right decision to get vaccinated, despite his initial fears.
“I feel good because I didn't even feel like I got the needle. So far it's looking good. One a di time mi did 'fraid, trust me. Me did absolutely 'fraid, but mi don't even feel like mi did get the needle. To be honest mi did a go wait. As far as mi see, might as well people just tek it,” Riley stated.
Nicholas Skervin, another employee, said that, because he is an asthma patient, he is relieved he got his first dose.
“I'm a person that was born with asthma, so with that underlying illness, if I should get the COVID-19 my chance of living is slim, so I would rather be vaccinated than to be unvaccinated. Asthma is a respiratory illness, so if you add COVID to that, how would that seem?” Skervin told the Observer.
“We have people like our grandmothers and our grandfathers, even our little young ones; I don't want to bring the [virus] to them. I am on the road every day, I don't want to bring COVID to them,” he continued, as he encouraged those who have not yet taken the vaccine to do so.
Meanwhile, another employee, Gail Asque said now that she has got her first dose she has “peace of mind”.
Adding that the initiative was a good one, Asque said, “I would have to take a day off from work to go in one of the public systems, so being as though I'm still at work and I could get my vaccine, I appreciate it.”
Encouraging others to get immunised, she stated: “Come on board...I'm feeling pretty OK, I'm fine. It was very smooth; I think that the waiting period was like half an hour because I was outside in the line, because of the social distance, which was good for me.”
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