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Groups pushing to be considered under Vaccine Phase 1b

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Monday was the final day for public comment on recommendations for who should be a part of phase 1b for vaccines.

Despite the CDC recommending certain groups should be on the list, current state recommendations leave them out.

When you compare the CDC recommendations to the current State Disaster Medical Advisory Vaccine subcommittee recommendations, many frontline essential workers are left out, like grocery store workers.

Advocates say they've been put at risk to keep people fed since the start of the pandemic and deserve to be included.

Brandon Scholz with the Wisconsin Grocers Association said with the amount of people grocery store employees come in contact with, it would be irresponsible to let them go unvaccinated, despite the precautions in place.

At Metcalfe's Market in Madison, owner Tim Metcalfe says if it was so important to have his staff work during the Safer at Home order, then they should be prioritized.

"We just believe that grocery store workers, and all essential workers and people that have frontline exposure to customers like we do, should be considered to be in 1b," he said.

Another group requesting being a part of 1b: financial workers.

The Wisconsin Bankers Association and Wisconsin Credit Union is sending a letter to the vaccine distribution subcommittee, saying they should be considered for the next phase because of the face-to-face contact with customers and the work they do to bring the economy back online.

Other groups in the CDC recommendations and not state: food and agriculture workers, postal workers, public transit and manufacturing workers.

The subcommittee will meet on Wednesday at 7 a.m. to decide on final recommendations.

Francisco Almenara

Reporter, WKOW

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