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Pardes Hanna-Karkur only remaining orange city as segment refuses vaccine

CM 27/04/2021

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As Israel has continued to lead the world in coronavirus vaccination rates, the city of Pardes Hanna-Karkur, near Haifa, remains the only city with an orange status in Israel, which according to an N12 report, is due to the alleged refusal of some residents to get vaccinated.
As a result of the higher infection rate in the city, some 13 classrooms and three kindergartens have been shut down, while the Health Ministry has also reported that 48 active cases in the city. Similarly, the ministry indicated that two percent of the city’s population have tested positive for the virus.
Pardes Hanna-Karkur has a noted history of not vaccinating children for measles, leading to a major outbreak of the virus in 2018 that endangered children in the area.
Speaking to N12, residents of the city were asked as to the reason many are unwilling to get vaccinated.
“In terms of the general percentage of vaccinated people, I do not think there is anything unique or different in Pardes Hanna compared to other localities in the country,” said Talia (pseudonym), speaking to N12.
 “I think what contributed to the current outbreak is related to the fact that most opponents of the vaccine are concentrated in one area – they all send their children to the Democratic school. And unlike other areas in the country that maintain a relatively low profile on the issue, here most vaccine opponents are extremists in their opinions,” Talia added.
Itai,  a resident of the city who has not yet received the vaccine, explained the to N12 the situation in Pardes Hanna-Karkur, saying “I have not been vaccinated yet, but I am not anti-vaccine. I just have not found a good enough reason to get vaccinated so far, certainly not now when the situation in the country is calm… I think that in general people in the area do act responsibly, and those who need to go into isolation do so.”

“There are different communities here, but once there is a state of infection, [people] immediately attack the non-vaccinated group, I’m sure there are political agendas here…I understand the frustration, but I think it’s only a matter of time before the coronavirus raises its head at one point or another, so there is no substantial importance to this whole discussion in my eyes.”
Hagar Perry, head of the local council, spoke in video addressing the coronavirus situation in the city, saying that “We have conversations with the residents, we are here for any question and any assistance. Although the cases are rising and we are in the orange zone, about half of those in quarantine  are in the same age group – it is about 0.09 percent of the population of Pardes Hanna-Karkur.”

“Our lives have returned to routine,” Perry added.   Source: Jerusalem Post

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