A group of Semiahmoo Peninsula seniors took to the streets Friday afternoon, rallying in favour of COVID-19 vaccinations.
Led by 90-year-old Julie Mahrer, the group of about a dozen seniors stood along Johnston Road, just south of North Bluff Road, holding signs that read “Fear not – get your shot”; “Do your part – get vaccinated” and “Vaccinations save lives!” among other slogans.
Mahrer told Peace Arch News that she is the only fully vaccinated person in her family – a frustration that led her and her friends to gather in support of the continued push for people to get vaccinated.
“We feel very passionate about this and hope that this way we (can) raise awareness that getting vaccinated is so important to get rid of this pandemic,” she said, prior to Friday’s event.
“It has divided families and friends and is heartbreaking.”
On Friday, Mahrer noted that the group had received “great” support from passersby; many pedestrians stopped to chat, and numerous drivers honked as they drove past the demonstration.
“Lots of honking,” she said.
In addition to her frustration regarding some unvaccinated family members, Mahrer said she and her supporters also decided to take to the streets as a way to counteract the anti-vaccination and anti-vaccination-passport protests that have been popping up in recent weeks.
“You’ve got these anti-vaxxers out here crying bloody murder, so why can’t we do it, too?” she said.
“Maybe this will start a trend and other people will do it.”
Support for the cause grew by at least one Friday, with Mahrer pointing out that one member of their rally group was not part of the original team, but simply saw the group and asked to join in.
COVID-19 numbers have been on the rise in B.C. for a number of weeks, as the fourth wave of the pandemic – spurred in large part by new virus variants – continues throughout the province.
B.C. is currently seeing upward of 700 new positive cases each day – on Thursday, 749 new cases and nine new deaths were announced – and there have been more than 186,000 cases and 1,953 deaths in the province since the start of the pandemic.