Mayor Wu’s “B Together” Program Is the Leadership Boston Needs
During Mayor Michelle Wu’s campaign, she promised that she would center public health and equity, listen to both lead immunologists and community members, and adopt best practices. And that’s exactly what she has done with B Together, her new vaccine mandate for restaurants, gyms, and entertainment venues.
Mass vaccination is essential to public health and economic recovery. We applaud the work that the City has done this year in ensuring that as many Bostonians as possible get vaccinated. But there is more work to be done to increase our vaccination rates as well as to create safe spaces for those who are vaccinated to gather, especially as we head into a long winter with the rise of a new COVID-19 variant.
First of all, mandates work. The vaccination rate in New York City increased 9 percent after Mayor Bill DeBlasio’s launch of the “Key to NYC” mandate, with an even higher increase among 18-34 year-olds. Mandates are an essential tool for promoting vaccination.
Second, the vaccine mandate protects both customers and local business owners. It is easy to find out if everyone is vaccinated before attending a small get-together at a friend or family member’s house. But in larger indoor venues, uncertainty reigns. Wu’s vaccine mandate will give customers confidence that they can patronize local restaurants and entertainment sites safely. And it gives local business owners a standard set of rules to play by, bolstering those who have already been taking key precautions.
Many people choose to live in Back Bay, Fenway, or the South End exactly because of our proximity to so many excellent restaurants, theaters, galleries, and museums. They are what makes our city as vibrant as it is. Wu’s mandate shows that we can support them this winter while keeping Boston and ourselves healthy. We are all better off for her leadership.
Members of the Boston Ward 4 Democratic Committee: Amelia Aubourg, Jonathan Cohn, Aaron Dy, Jovita Fontanez, Nina Garfinkle, Lisa Jeanne Graf, Ryan Hatcher, Carol Lasky, Sandra Lipson, Suzie McGlone, Andrea Olmstead, Anne Renehan, Jacqueline Royce, Ben Siegel M.D., Jane Siegel, Janet Slovin, Jacob Wessel