Among black New Yorkers, only 48% of people aged 18 to 44 have received at least one dose of the vaccine, compared with about 60% of people 45 and older, according to city data.
“Generation Z and Generation Y have a different relationship with the institutional black church,” said Nichole R. Phillips, director of the Black Church Studies program at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University. “If you have a generation that is not so present in the pews, it will have an impact on the use of the church as a place of public health education.”
Dr Easterling said city health officials know that outreach efforts in churches will primarily engage “an older population,” but he said such efforts to address vaccine reluctance may have a subsequent effect on young people.
“We know in particular that in black churches we have seen that it is mainly the older generations who have really focused on going to church in person,” he said. “We also see parents in their 40s and 50s, and they play an important role in talking to their teens and children. They share information.
More than one million people in New York have contracted Covid-19 and more than 34,000 have died since the city’s first confirmed case on February 29, 2020, according to city data.
The State of Vaccine Mandates in the United States
- Vaccination rules. On August 23, the FDA granted full approval to Pfizer-BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccine for people 16 years of age and older, paving the way for mandates in the public and private sectors. Such warrants are authorized by law and have been confirmed in court challenges.
- College and universities. More than 400 colleges and universities require students to be vaccinated against Covid-19. Almost all of them are in states that voted for President Biden.
- Schools. California has become the first state to issue a vaccination warrant for all educators and to announce its intention to add the Covid-19 vaccine as a requirement to attend school, which could begin as early as next fall. Los Angeles already has a vaccination mandate for public school students ages 12 and older that begins Nov. 21. New York City’s mandate for teachers and staff, which went into effect Oct. 4 after delays due to legal challenges, appears to have sparked thousands of minutes of gunfire.
- Hospitals and medical centers. Many hospitals and large healthcare systems require their employees to be vaccinated. Mandates for healthcare workers in California and New York state appear to have forced thousands of holdouts to receive injections.
- Indoor activities. New York City requires workers and customers to show proof of at least one dose of Covid-19 for indoor meals, gyms, entertainment and shows. Starting November 4, Los Angeles will require most people to provide full proof of vaccination to enter a range of indoor businesses, including restaurants, gyms, museums, cinemas, and lounges, in one of the strictest vaccination rules in the country.
- At the federal level. September 9 President Biden announced a vaccination mandate for the vast majority of federal workers. This mandate will apply to employees of the executive, including the White House and all federal agencies and members of the armed forces.
- In tthe private sector. Mr Biden demanded that all businesses with more than 100 employees require weekly vaccination or testing, helping to propel new corporate vaccination policies. Some companies, like United Airlines and Tyson Foods, had mandates in place before Mr. Biden’s announcement.
That includes 175,751 black New Yorkers who contracted the coronavirus in October, or about 9% of the city’s black population, compared to 245,536 white New Yorkers, or about 7% of the city’s white population. According to city data, 31,108 black New Yorkers had been hospitalized from Covid-19 and 14,820 died from it this month.
The coronavirus has wreaked havoc in neighborhoods like Hunts Point, home to the Word of Life International Church, a Pentecostal congregation that Pastor Udo-Okon founded 21 years ago in his living room.