Governor Wolf visits COVID vaccine-eligible grocery store workers in Pa.

Vaccinate PA

(Photo: PA Governor’s Office)

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Governor Tom Wolf went grocery shopping on Tuesday. He wasn’t looking for milk or eggs, but for workers willing to roll up their sleeves and get vaccinated.

They’re not at the front of the line, but many wonder what took so long?

Wolf at the grocery store was not a routine visit, and for the past year, these have not been routine employees.

“Grocery workers have been on the front lines of this pandemic right from the very beginning,” Wolf said.

And they are now eligible for vaccines. Weis market employee Liz Ebert took advantage. Was she scared of her potentially dangerous profession during the pandemic? Was her mom?

“My mom actually worked with me at a Weis. It’s fun getting to work with her, but no I’m never scared,” Ebert said.

Ebert says Weis followed strict safety protocols and is now offering vaccines. It estimates 70-80% of its employees will accept, but if workers don’t volunteer their arms, Weis won’t twist them.

“If they don’t, we’re respectful of it. We offer, but we’re not pushing,” Weis Markets VP Pharmacist Rick Seipp said.

Everyone agrees grocery store workers have been crucial. What’s in dispute is why did they have to wait so long to get shots?

“I think it’s conflicting. Everyone, there are different opinions on that and hopefully, we’ve been able to protect them and they’ve been able to be smart,” Seipp said.

Why would they not have categorized to a higher group sooner?

“That’s a good question,” Wolf said.

Even though the Governor ultimately controls who is in what category, he blamed the CDC guidelines.

“We followed those guidelines and we changed them like this when we thought it was important,” Wolf said.

The Governor is saying that any Pennsylvanian that wants a shot should have access to an appointment in just under two weeks.

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