Police were called to the mobile vaccination unit set up at Springfield on Saturday after it's claimed a group of 15 to 20 protesters verbally harassed people coming in to get their jab, as well as the staff working at the unit.
One mum, who had taken her son along to get vaccinated, described on social media how she says a man with a placard shouted at him about having a serious bad reaction to the jab.
Police say no offences took place, and no arrests were made, and the group had dispersed by 16:00.
A spokesperson said the police had been called on Saturday 7 August at 15:45 regarding a group of around 15 to 20 protesters who had turned up at the Springfield Pop-up Vaccine Centre.
"Some of these protesters were verbally harassing staff and some of the people attending to be vaccinated," they added.
Pictured: Police said no offences had taken place and no arrests were made.
One mum chose to share her son’s experience on her social media profile in the hope of prompting protestors to “consider the effect of their actions”, as she didn’t want other children to go through the same thing.
She told Express that her son had made a “fully informed choice” to get the vaccine after his sister got very ill with covid, and due to having a number of family members with underlying health issues.
As she couldn’t find a parking space near Springfield, she explained that her son jumped out of the car and walked to the centre while she went to park. She said she noticed a group of people “mingling” near the centre but assumed they were parents waiting for their children.
“My son asked the group if this was a queue and one guy told him to walk the other way,” she explained. “He realised then that these were protesters, so he walked through them and went into the tent. The staff were brilliant, he had his vaccination but when he was shown to the chairs, they were facing the protestors and he was really intimidated at the thought of having to sit and be stared at.
“When I got back to him, there was a man with a placard, shouting at my son quoting the number of people who had died from the vaccine and the number who had experienced adverse reactions. This was incessant. I asked him to stop, and this only made things worse.”
Amid this tension, the mum praised the staff from the vaccination unit, saying they “could not have handled the situation better”. She said they regularly checked on her and her son to make sure they were ok, and that one of the team members even stood in front one of the protestors to try and protect her son.
“When we left we did so through the back of the tent,” she said. “By this time, there were police in attendance. It was horrible.
Senator Sam Mézec said that, while he will defend people's right to protest “with every breath he has”, they shouldn’t interfere with medical procedures.
The Government of Jersey started offering vaccines at pop-up centres last Monday as part of a push to get more young people protected against covid.
The 'Rock Up' scheme saw covid jabs offered at the Bel Royal Kiosk, the Royal Square, as well as Springfield, Five Oaks and Les Quennevais across the week. 30 islanders took the opportunity to get an injection at the Royal Square.
At the time of the scheme's launch, the vaccination figures showed there had been a lag among the younger generations in getting the jab, with 38% of 18-29 year-olds still not having had a first dose, and 30% of those between 30-34 having not had one either.
Today, our team will be at the Royal Square from 11.30am to 2pm, and then in the Le Mare beach carpark from 5pm to 6pm.— Government of Jersey (@GovJersey) August 9, 2021
No appointment is needed, just bring some ID.
Find out where we'll be this week, here: https://t.co/ZHP7pgBXBb pic.twitter.com/1v36OnfQLF
Meanwhile, walk-in vaccine appointments at the Fort Regent Vaccination Centre have been extended for the rest of this month for both first and second doses.
In the first week the walk-in appointments were offered, 219 islanders took the opportunity to get their jabs this way.
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