Jacob’s Journal – Weekly News Rewind (09/20-09/26)
Nearly 40% of California State Workers Are Unvaccinated Against COVID Despite Newsom Order
Friday, October 15 (The Sacramento Bee) – Data from California’s Human Resources Department reveal only about 62% of state workers have received a COVID-19 vaccination as of October 7. In July, Governor Gavin Newsom ordered workers to be vaccinated or submit to regular testing. The rate remains low compared to the general state population, of which 72% are vaccinated. Caltrans reported a 70% vaccination rate among its employees, while the California Highway Patrol reported 52%, Department of Motor Vehicles 60%, and prison employees 60% (the California State Lottery reported 77% of workers have submitted proof of vaccination). However, the employee data accounts for just 213,000 of the state’s 238,000 employees.
Concerns are rising that, as state offices reopen, vaccinated employees and unvaccinated individuals may be in closer contact. Many employees haven’t shown proof, so the true vaccination rate could be higher than reported in the latest data. Nonetheless, several state unions have objected to the governor’s shot-or-test rules, including SEIU Local 1000, Cal Fire Local 2881, and the International Union of Operating Engineers. These rules are less stringent than those imposed on health care workers (who unless claim a medical or religious exemption, must get vaccinated).
California Ranked 3rd In New Study On ‘Safest’ States During COVID-19; Data Highlights Blue And Red State Divide
Thursday, October 14 (CBS Sacramento) – A study by WalletHub released on Thursday ranked California as one of the safest states during the COVID-19 pandemic. Factors it has considered in gauging state responses included rates of transmission, positive testing, hospitalizations/deaths, and the number of eligible people who have received a vaccination. California scored third behind Connecticut and Massachusetts. The bottom three included Wyoming, West Virginia, and Idaho. In the study, California had the 5th lowest positive testing rate and second-lowest death rate, while states that voted for Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election ranked safer during COVID-19 that those where Donald Trump got more votes (an average rank of 17.35 compared to 35.00).
Hesperia Man Killed in Crash on I-15 Freeway in Apple Valley
Wednesday, October 13 (VVNG) – The California Highway Patrol is investigating a multi-vehicle crash that occurred on October 12 and killed a 28-year-old man from Hesperia. At approximately 2:49 a.m., CHP officers responded to a traffic collision on the southbound lanes of I-15, just south of Wild Wash Road. They determined the Hesperia man was driving south in a 2019 Nissan, traveling at a high rate of speed, and lost control for unknown reasons, per a CHP news release.
The vehicle overturned and came to rest within the #1 and #2 lanes. It also collided with a 2014 Toyota in the #2 lane, driven by a 72-year-old man, which caused the Nissan to move back to the #1 lane and cause a collision with a 2018 infinity driven by a 74-year-old man from Las Vegas. The driver of the Nissan was pronounced dead on the scene, while the driver of the Infinity suffered moderate injuries and was taken to Barstow Community Hospital. The driver of the Toyota sustained minor injuries. Although the accident is still under investigation, the CHP does not believe alcohol or drugs to be a contributing factor.