"Lottery cash drawings, with prizes totaling $2 million

  • Higher education tuition and expense assistance
  • Sports tickets and gear
  • Gift cards
  • Airline tickets
  • Game systems and smart speakers"
  • These are among the 'perks' laid out by Gov. Inslee Thursday afternoon as part of his 'perks' program, trying to convince Washington residents to get a COVID vaccine.

    Struggling to get the state to accept the COVID vaccines has not been easy for Inslee and officials. After a large surge in the early part of 2021 by people who wanted it, or whose health conditions would be safeguarded by getting the shot the state has seen rates fall.

    Officials at the Benton County Fairgrounds Mass Vaccination site saw hundreds of open appointments in the weeks leading up to it's closing just prior to Memorial Day. It appears, as we have reported, those who wishes to get it have/are, and those who don't are not.

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    Thursday Inslee unveiled his latest perks program, including the items mentioned earlier in this article. According to the Governor:

    “These generous programs will encourage more Washingtonians to take this life-saving vaccine,” Inslee said during a press conference Thursday. “I hope people will see this as an opportunity to reopen even sooner than June 30 if we can stay motivated, stay informed and get more people vaccinated faster throughout the month of June.”

    Some of the sports gear mentioned includes items from the Seahawks, Sounders, Mariners, Storm and the soon to begin play NHL Seattle Kraken. There are other opportunities with the Washington's Lottery, weekly drawings for $250K, plus a plethora of other items.

    Growing numbers of critics, including state legislators, are decrying these tactics (as well as the use of vaccinated vs. non-vaccinated areas at events) as discriminatory. Others say it's making a mockery of a personal, serious medical choice.

    The state's re-open date of June 30 is tied to vaccination metrics, which as of Thursday, June 3, were at just over 50% of the state's population vaccinated.

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