President Joe Biden on Thursday (Jul 29) urged state and local officials to offer unjabbed residents $100 cash payments to incentivise them to receive a Covid-19 vaccine as the highly contagious delta variant spreads in the country.
The latest attempt to kickstart U.S 's stalled vaccination campaign comes as coronavirus cases in the U.S. begin to surge once again, with the highly contagious delta variant fueling infection rates.
Biden cited research from the University of California, Los Angeles in which roughly one-third of unvaccinated individuals said a cash payment would make them more likely to get a shot. He asked the states to use money from the $1.9tn American Rescue Plan legislation to fund the incentives.
Biden pointed out that while monetary incentive may seem unfair to already vaccinated Americans, it will benefit "if we can get more people vaccinated".
Less than half of U.S population is fully vaccinated. Close to 58% of the population has received at least one dose.
The president also issued a strict new vaccine requirement for US federal workers, the nation's largest workforce with some two million people. The order requires employees to show proof of vaccination or be subjected to mandatory testing and masking.
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