US President Joe Biden during his Prime Time Address to the nation (Photo/ANI)
US President Joe Biden during his Prime Time Address to the nation (Photo/ANI)

US President directs states to open COVID vaccination for all adults by May 1

ANI | Updated: Mar 12, 2021 08:42 IST


Washington [US], March 12 (ANI): President Joe Biden on Thursday offered a plan to lift the nation out of the coronavirus pandemic, announcing that he is directing US states to open coronavirus vaccine eligibility to all adults no later than May 1, reported CNN.
In a speech from the Cross Hall of the White House, Biden said that the move to inoculate all adults will allow for small Independence Day gatherings on July 4.
"After this long hard year, that will make this Independence Day something truly special where we not only mark our independence as a nation but begin to mark our independence from this virus," he said.
He asserted that the effort to beat back the virus as a collective and patriotic initiative even as he lamented the untold losses suffered by Americans over the past year, reported CNN.
"Finding light in the darkness is a very American thing to do. In fact, it may be the most American thing we do," he said.
"We know what we need to do to beat this virus," Biden said. "Tell the truth."
The President delivered a careful balance of optimism, along with a strong dose of reality, as he told Americans: "This fight is far from over." He also issued a clarion call for "national unity," imploring Americans to set aside the partisan fights over masks and restrictions.
"I will not relent until I meet this virus, but the American people: I need you," Biden said. "I need every American to do their part."
The announcement in Biden's speech comes as COVID-19 cases drop but as thousands of Americans continue to die from the virus each week.
His remarks took stock of the worst year in recent memory (coronavirus pandemic) while projecting hope the next one will be better.
He told Americans the risk of the virus was "very, very low," offering a vastly different message following nearly 530,000 US deaths, an economic meltdown and a dramatic altering of everyday life.
To make his case, he had on his side declining case counts, millions of vaccinated Americans and a USD 1.9 trillion stimulus package that he signed into law Thursday afternoon. The confluence of positive signs has made for an optimistic moment that Biden is eager to seize, reported CNN.
He will detail a national website launching at the start of May that provides information about locating a vaccine.
In his speech, Biden also addressed school reopening efforts, announcing a summit convened by the Department of Education and expanded testing capacity for K-8 facilities.
Biden also raised the issue of rise in hate crimes targeted at Asian Americans in his prime time address. "Vicious hate crimes against Asian Americans who have been attacked, harassed, blamed, and scapegoated," Biden said.
"At this very moment, so many of our fellow Americans are on the front lines of this pandemic, trying to save lives. And still -- still -- they are forced to live in fear for their lives, just walking down streets in America. It's wrong. It's un-American. And it must stop," he said. (ANI)

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