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President Biden partnering with Black-owned businesses

Updated: Jun. 9, 2021 at 9:12 PM CDT
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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - President Joe Biden is teaming up with Black-owned businesses, including barbershops and hair salons, to encourage more Americans to get the COVID vaccine.

The president said he wants to partner with these businesses to host “Shots at the Shop” during the month of June. He’s trying to build a relationship with Black business owners by relying on them to talk to their customers about the vaccine.

His June initiative focuses on bringing 1,000 Black-owned barbershops and Black-owned hair salons to serve as vaccination sites.

“The more Americans get vaccinated, the better it would be for all Americans to help this economy and help the people just get back to living normal again,” said Lonniel Robinson, owner of Jimmy and Frankie’s Cut & Curl.

Robinson took over the shop last year during the pandemic when the original owners stepped down. He says the Black community is dying at a larger rate than other races.

“Because we need it,” said Robinson. “We’re dying more than anybody else.”

Takieshia Page, owner of Hair by Jazzy K, feels differently.

“I’m going to be getting the vaccine and I wouldn’t be allowing my children to get the vaccine at all,” said Page.

The president’s plan offers incentives like food and giveaways to the shops to help draw more traffic in and get more people educated and vaccinated.

Robinson believes President Biden’s initiative is needed in the Black community.

“I think anything that can help that can encourage people vaccinated, I just think it’s a help to all people and for everybody,” said Robinson.

Page said she understands the Black community is at a higher risk to die from COVID, but...

“It’s statistics, I haven’t been affected,” said Page. “I mean I’ve known people who have been affected but I can just say that as long as we are healthy, I feel like I’m fine.”

Page only takes natural medication. She said she’s never had the flu shot, and she plans on practicing safe habits. As far as the giveaways, Page said she’ll pass on Biden’s incentives.

“I don’t need anything given to me for a vaccine at all,” said Page.

Both owners said they feel strongly about their decision and believe they’re making the best decision for their community and businesses.

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