NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — FEMA officials reassured community members in Hampton Roads that immigration status will not play a factor in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine at a mass-vaccination clinic at Military Circle Mall.
In a release sent Monday afternoon, officials say the newly opened community vaccination center is for all residents regardless of their immigration status.
“Hampton Roads residents with an appointment will receive their immunization in a space that is safe and open to all,” the release said.
FEMA Region 3 Regional Administrator Janice Barlow said that their priority is securing access and equity in providing the COVID-19 vaccine to those who need it the most.
“We are focused on getting as many Virginians vaccinated as we can, and immigration status is not a limiting factor.”
FEMA officials assured that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection will not conduct enforcement operations at or near vaccine distribution sites or clinics.
The mass-vaccination site opened late March at full capacity. The clinic has a capacity of 3,000 vaccinations a day.
During its opening, Gov. Ralph Northam visited the site the same day he announced that it would be a FEMA mass-vaccination clinic. The city of Norfolk had already been using the mall as a vaccination site as early as February, however, the site was run by state and local health officials at that time.
The vaccine site is now run by FEMA through a partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Health and Human Services (HHS), Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM), Virginia Department of Health, (VDH) and the City of Norfolk.
If you want to get the vaccine, you must register at https://vaccinate.virginia.gov or call 1-877-VAX-IN VA (1-877-829-4682), 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. If you’re eligible, you’ll be contacted for an appointment.
There is no charge for the vaccine.