Giving the vaccine to younger people is good, but it should have happened sooner

Prioritizing those who commonly work on the front lines would have helped stop the spread

(Phil Roeder/Flickr)

As more people in British Columbia get their first dose of a COVID vaccine with the start of summer slowly approaching, there is some hope to have a livelier time during the warm and sunny months.

The province is currently in Phase 4 of their plan to get as many people immunized from a virus that has heavily impacted the world for well over a year now. In this plan, there are phases when people can get vaccinated, giving priority to front-line workers and the oldest civilians in the province.

However, the majority of people working on the front lines during the pandemic are in the age demographic from 18 to 34, who are out there doing just as much to help everyone survive the past several months as their senior counterparts.

While I do understand that older people are more vulnerable to the virus than younger people, if the province wanted to achieve herd immunity quickly and safely as possible, would it not make at least just as much sense to get as many people protected without bottlenecking who can and can’t get the vaccine due to their age? Especially for those who are still working out there right now, always at risk of getting infected themselves at any point?

As someone who is currently working in retail in their early 20s, this may be a biased opinion.

However, I have also seen the many stages of the pandemic and how people have adapted to it.

I’ve had to turn too many people away for not wearing any type of face-covering upon my first few weeks back at my job and get lashed out in response. I constantly clean the workplace after people leave a mess and complain about the protocols to protect them from getting infected.

I make sure the workplace doesn’t go over capacity while reminding people to remain distant from each other.

In regards to my experience getting vaccinated, I registered for my immunization last month. At this moment, I only got an appointment for my first vaccine dose booked early next week.

However, I sometimes can’t help but wonder if people around my age could have gotten vaccinated sooner. Especially when you consider that Canada took longer to start getting people vaccinated compared to other parts of the world.

While I am definitely not the first to talk about something similar, there seems to be a growing group of front-line workers who argue that there should be a higher priority placed on protecting them from being infected, especially the younger ones.

As someone who also works on the front lines, I feel that someone who is out there at higher risk than those who have the luxury to stay at home, I feel my reasoning is justified here.

If the province really wants to achieve herd immunity as soon as possible, vaccinating as many people as possible seemed like the better option.