Verify people – DC Writers Way Sat, 18 Sep 2021 06:35:46 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Verify people – DC Writers Way 32 32 Hawaii Vaccination Check App Logs Over 100,000 Downloads Sat, 18 Sep 2021 04:26:15 +0000

State officials said there were now more than 100,000 successful downloads of COVID-19 vaccination checks to the Hawaii SMART Health Card app since its launch last Friday.

From 2 a.m. last Friday to 2 p.m. Thursday, officials from the state bureau of enterprise technology services said there were 101,199 successful downloads, which is roughly 75% of all creative attempts. a Hawaii SMART health card, which was planned. Last Friday, on its first day, the state tracked nearly 20,000 downloads.

The SMART Health card is available at, the same site travelers use for the Hawaii Safe Travels program.

“I am delighted with the number of participants the Hawaii SMART Health Card has received since the program launched last week,” said Douglas Murdock, chief information officer, Office of Enterprise Technology Services, in a press release.

Honolulu and Maui counties accept Hawaii SMART Health Card QR codes as proof of vaccination.

Obtaining a Hawaii SMART Health card is voluntary. People can also show their original card or a digital photo of it as proof of vaccination.

Some reasons why individuals may have failed to generate SMART Health Cards have to do with the accuracy of the data entered by the individual and the provider into the state database. The human entry of variant names could be, in some cases, the reason for the verification failure.

Additionally, people who have received vaccines from entities that do not submit data to the state database – such as federal immunization programs – will not be able to obtain a Hawaii SMART Health Card.

These entities include the Department of Defense, the Department of Veterans Affairs, some federal agencies, and some pharmacies that have provided vaccines to nursing homes under the long-term care facilities program.

The Office of Enterprise Technology Services provided the following advice:

>> Make sure that the name used in your Safe Travels profile is the same as the one entered in the database. The name in the database comes from the electronic file provided by the service provider administering the shot. So that’s the name you gave the nurse or doctor at the time of the injection. For people who have made an appointment online, please verify the name you entered to make an appointment.

>> Check your name variations. For example: Doug vs. Douglas, Jones-Smith vs. Jones Smith.

>> Check your vaccine lot numbers and make sure they are correct. For example, that 0 is really 0 and not the letter “O”, and 1 is really 1 and not the letter “l”.

>> Check your date of birth and dates of inoculation, and that you have entered them correctly.

>> If you are having trouble completing the application process while using your mobile device, try using your laptop or computer.

Developers are constantly working to improve the app and its functionality, officials said. Updates will be posted on

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As COVID cases decline, why is there a new vaccine mandate? Fri, 17 Sep 2021 17:30:18 +0000

Even as coronavirus cases fall in LA County, health officials this week announced new vaccine requirements for a variety of entertainment and recreation venues.

The measures are cautious, experts say, and aim to prevent – or at least reduce – an expected fall or winter wave. The arrival of the peak holiday season will bring people together from everywhere, and the colder weather will increasingly push gatherings and recreation indoors, increasing the risk of transmission.

“This is a reasonable path forward that will allow us to better break the cycle of flare-ups,” Los Angeles County Director of Public Health Barbara Ferrer said this week.

Gov. Gavin Newsom also called for caution this week, despite improving COVID-19 numbers statewide.

Newsom pointed out that “it was around the same time last year that we also started to see this stabilization and decline.”

“We have to be vigilant,” he told reporters. “Of course, the best way to mitigate this… is to continue our vaccination efforts.”

Regarding LA County’s upcoming vaccine verification plan, Newsom said the state has no plans to adopt a similar tactic right now, but said “if that encourages more people get vaccinated, then I think it’s the right thing to do, and I continue to encourage others. to follow this path.

The main goal of the effort is to increase LA County’s vaccination rates.

About 67% of Angelenos have already been at least partially vaccinated against COVID-19, according to the Times tracker.

But that’s still below the level of vaccine coverage needed to break the chain of coronavirus transmission, officials and experts say. And the recent rate of inoculation has been so slow that there is a risk of a “cycle of repeated relapses every few months,” Ferrer warned this week.

The pace of gunfire accelerated in late July and early August as the effects of the current wave fueled by the Delta variant became apparent, but that increase in weekly vaccinations has started to fade, data from the county public health department. .

“In order to avoid a cycle of repeated relapses every few months, we will need a significant increase in vaccine coverage,” Ferrer said.

Amusement park

The basics

Under a new health decree due to be released on Friday, verification of a COVID-19 shot or negative test will be required for attendees of outdoor “mega-events” – those with over 10,000 visitors – to LA County starting Oct. 7.

While this covers recurring events such as conventions, concerts, and sporting events, the California Department of Public Health has also extended this definition to include amusement and water parks.

In LA County, that means Universal Studios Hollywood and Six Flags Magic Mountain could be subject to the test or vaccine verification requirement.

“It’s only for theme parks that have over 10,000 visitors. For smaller parks, they won’t be covered by this, ”Ferrer said in a briefing Thursday.

According to a 2020 study by engineering firm Aecom, Universal Studios Hollywood averages around 25,000 visitors per day, while Magic Mountain has 9,900 per day.

It was not immediately clear whether the county would use daily park attendance or its operational capacity to determine whether the new rules would apply. County health officials said more information would be provided during a Friday afternoon briefing.


LA County’s requirements will go beyond those outlined at the state level. The California Department of Public Health recommends, but does not require, that participants in outdoor mega-events show evidence that they have recently tested negative for COVID-19 or have been fully vaccinated.

However, the state requires such verification for indoor events with at least 1,000 people.

Bars, nightclubs

Indoor bars, wineries, breweries, nightclubs and lounges across much of Los Angeles County will also require proof of COVID-19 vaccination under the new health order.

The mandate will require customers and employees to receive at least one dose of vaccine by October 7 and be fully immunized by November 4.

The order would affect all areas of Los Angeles County except Long Beach and Pasadena, which have their own public health departments.

While a Pasadena spokesperson said the city is “waiting to review the health order to determine how we move forward,” Long Beach officials have already decided to align their local rules with those of the county.


LA County is far from alone in using commercial vaccine verification as a new tool in the battle against COVID-19.

San Francisco and Berkeley require customers 12 and older in indoor restaurants, bars and gyms to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination. Contra Costa County, the third most populous in the Bay Area, has ordered customers of these businesses to show either proof of vaccination or a recent negative coronavirus test result.

Palm Springs and neighboring Cathedral City have ordered guests 12 and older to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a recent negative coronavirus test to enter indoor restaurants and bars.

Indoor restaurants

The new LA County health order will not extend to restaurants, although health officials strongly recommend vaccination checks in interior parts of these businesses.

The county’s ongoing requirement that residents wear masks in indoor public places will remain in place, according to Ferrer.

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“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is”: Online scams on the rise, police say Fri, 17 Sep 2021 05:19:00 +0000
Police advise people to be on the lookout for fraudulent online transactions.


Police advise people to be on the lookout for fraudulent online transactions.

Wellington Police are seeing an increase in fraudulent online transactions as the return to level 2 allows the resumption of online merchandise trade.

In a statement, police said they had received several reports of buyers using fake bank transfer statements and forged digital documents to confirm payments had been made.

Police statistics would probably only tell part of the story, as many people did not report the scam out of embarrassment, but the police urged people to report any suspicious activity to give them the best chance. to catch offenders.

“We are actively targeting offenders who commit volume and fraud offenses and will hold them accountable for their actions,” police said.

* How One Text Could Protect Mobile Phone Users From $ 30,000 Fraud
* Action needed to address low levels of cybercrime reporting
* Scammers target New Zealand Facebook business groups

Wellington’s mother, Carmen Arquier, took to the Facebook marketplace to sell her 12-year-old son’s headphones.

She was contacted by a woman who told her she needed it for her studies and could pay by bank transfer.

While showing up masked at the work of Arquier’s husband, she showed a confirmation of the bank transfer “so he gave her the headphones”.

Online sellers should not hand over merchandise until they see money in their account and verify that the transaction has cleared their bank, police say.


Online sellers should not hand over merchandise until they see money in their account and verify that the transaction has cleared their bank, police say.

The money never reached Arquier’s account and soon the woman stopped resending messages and answering calls.

“She seemed level, she even asked us to let her know if the money wasn’t going through because it had happened to her before,” Arquier said.

The family did some research online, including looking for a name they saw on the wire transfer document, and quickly found other cases of dissatisfied traders on their accounts.

“When my husband used his name [from banking details] on a txt, she responded very suspiciously, asking how we knew her name, ”Arquier said.

After a week without the money arriving, including the woman failing to show up for a meeting to pay cash for the headphones, they filed a complaint with the police.

“I really hope they will do something because if she can do it so easily, she can do it to a lot of people,” Arquier said.

Police said sellers should not hand over goods until they see the money in their account and verify that the transaction has cleared their bank.

“Communicate with the buyer and consider dealing in cash only. Trust your instincts. If it’s too good to be true or if it sounds like a scam, it probably is, and there will always be another opportunity to trade, ”police said.

Lisa Kerr of Trade Me said a team of 30 people monitor the website around the clock for scams or unwanted behavior.


Lisa Kerr of Trade Me said a team of 30 people monitor the website around the clock for scams or unwanted behavior.

Police have advised people buying and selling online to use sites such as Trade Me and legitimate stores or businesses.

Trade Me Trust and Security Officer Lisa Kerr said “you’d be crazy to try anything fishy on our site.”

“We have sophisticated systems in place and you leave deep electronic footprints on our site that can be traced,” Kerr said.

Thirty Wellington staff members monitored the site around the clock for any scams or unwanted behavior, Kerr said.

“We don’t want bastards using our site. “


Sally Lin is a freshman at TUE who was the victim of a $ 70,000 overseas phone scam.

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Nicki Minaj claims Covid-19 vaccines can cause testicular swelling and impotence Wed, 15 Sep 2021 02:09:06 +0000

On Monday, singer Nicki Minaj shared helpless claims about Covid-19 vaccines and testes on Twitter. But was his claim on the ball or was it really lacking in hard evidence?

Here is his tweet about his cousin in Trinidad:

Make him his cousin’s friend in Trinidad. As you can see, she indicated that her “cousin in Trinidad will not receive the vaccine because her friend received it and has become powerless. His testicles became swollen.

She continued with “her friend was a few weeks away from getting married, now the girl has called off the wedding. So just pray over it and make sure you’re comfortable with your decision, not intimidated. “

First of all, the typical wedding vow is “until death do you part” and not “until your testicles swell”. So, you must be wondering if this would have been the best marital union. Being fired before a marriage in this way is not the best sign that the marriage may have lasted. Second, a tweet like this really needs more follow-up details. After all, if your friend ever says “then my testicles got swollen,” your next answer probably won’t be, “oh, okay. Well, good to see you. Good day.”

Instead, if you’re claiming thousands, if not millions, of people that Covid-19 vaccines can cause impotence and swollen testicles, more accompanying information really is needed. For example, what do you mean by impotent and swollen testicles? How was this verified? Swelling of the testicles is not the same as a big spot on the forehead or something more obvious. It is not common to hear someone say, “Well, it was obvious at the party that his testicles were swollen.” Hearing something like this makes you wonder: (a) what kind of party was it and (b) what exactly were you doing at that party?

So, at the end of the day, the big question is whether a real doctor actually diagnosed the swelling and impotence and determined that they were in fact due to the Covid-19 vaccine? After all, it can be difficult to come to a consensus on what laymen may see as helplessness. The occasional flop isn’t the same as a constant inability to raise Arizona, or whatever name you’ve given your genitals. Likewise, what people might call swelling of the testicles or scrotum could range from “I have big balls and I can’t lie” to something really abnormal.

Plus, even with a medically diagnosed scrotal swelling, there are many different things that can cause it. For example, swelling can occur when you receive a kick in balls. Granted, you tend to remember when someone played “football” on you. When your doctor asks you ‘have you kicked your balls in the ball’ you don’t tend to say, ‘you know, doctor, I don’t remember that very well. Define “kicked in the balls”. I remember the risotto and the hot dogs for dinner.

There are, however, other less obvious causes. These include other types of trauma, various infections, fluid buildup, hernias, abnormally enlarged veins, and testicular cancer. It is not necessarily because something happened around the time of the vaccination that the Covid-19 vaccine caused it.

Remember, hearing a story about someone is not the same as doing research. A story partially told and not verified by medical experts does not constitute true scientific proof. There is a real vas deferens between the two.

In July I covered for Forbes Unsubstantiated claims on social media that Covid-19 vaccines could cause “mass male infertility” and that “all men who have been vaccinated are indeed infertile.” At the same time, I explained how a study published as a research letter in JAMA found no difference in sperm concentration, sperm count, sperm motility and semen volume in men before and after vaccination against Covid-19.

So far, more than 178 million people have been fully immunized in the United States alone. And a good proportion of these people have balls, literally and not figuratively. Yet how many official reports have there been of testicular swelling and impotence from the Covid-19 vaccine? An official report is a report that has been verified by at least one medical expert, a report where there are clear records of what happened.

Also, even if a verified case of testicular swelling were to emerge at some point, keep the relative risk level in mind. One in tens of millions would have a very, very low rating. Every day you eat, take, and do things that are much riskier. For example, it is likely that you have used the toilet recently. (By the way, if you haven’t, you might want to see a doctor.) Did you know that people have been killed by the toilet? Would that make you throw away anything that uses the toilet?

Meanwhile, while I was covering for Forbes in May, there were impotent official medical reports of erectile dysfunction from Covid-19. Yes, there is evidence in the groin that Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) can reach your testicles. For example, Anirban Maitra, MBBS, professor of pathology at MD Anderson Cancer Center tweeted the following:

So your risk of having testicular problems may be much greater with Covid-19 than with a vaccine that can protect you from Covid-19.

Remember, Minaj is a rapper, singer, and songwriter. She is neither a doctor nor a scientist. If you search for “Nicki Minaj” in PubMed, you get a single publication called “Plastic Surgery and Music: Examining Plastic Surgery References in Hit Songs”, and it was not written by her.

However, Fox News host Tucker Carlson decided to feature on his show what Minaj mentioned, her tweet and not the testicles, which is to say:

It’s one thing to have questions about the Covid-19 vaccine or any product for that matter. It’s reasonable to want to talk to a real doctor about any concerns you might have or stories you might have heard. However, sharing on social media or otherwise spreading an unverified claim about Covid-19 vaccines to millions of followers is a whole different story. This can have real harmful consequences. Suppose a person avoids getting the vaccine as a result and ends up dying from Covid-19 when all of this could have been avoided by getting the vaccine.

If your cousin’s friend, your nephew’s teacher enemy, your stepsister’s uncle’s chiropractor, or anyone for that matter has suffered from testicular swelling and impotence afterwards the Covid-19 vaccine, tell that person to see a doctor and notify the appropriate public health authorities. They can then proceed with the appropriate medical assessment and testing to determine the real cause of the problem.

Many claims about Covid-19 vaccines are, let’s say, a little crazy. On social media there is really a lot of, well you see the picture. So, don’t rush to throw your ball, or someone else’s ball, into the Twitter realm until you have real scientific evidence to back up your claims.

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Voters’ “Canvas” Contains Big Claims, No Evidence, Plain and Simple Lies Sat, 11 Sep 2021 00:05:26 +0000

Nestled against the foothills of Estrella Mountain Regional Park, a nearly 3,000 square foot home sits on allegedly vacant land.

According to a report by Tory activists who have spent much of the year since the election knocking on Maricopa County doors and asking people about their voting history, Goodyear’s address is a wasteland where two people nevertheless voted by mail in the November elections.

The Arizona mirror visited the address at Goodyear and found a house that is clearly visible from the street. A low wall surrounds the grounds and the house number is visible from the dirt road that leads to the gate at the front of the property. The house is also visible on satellite images on Google Maps which can be easily found with a few simple touches.

A few more keystrokes are all it takes to access the property records at the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office which show two owners who took possession of the property in 2018. The house itself was built in 2005, these records show. The Maricopa County Elections Department said these two owners, along with a third person registered to vote there, voted by mail in the 2020 general election.

After months of hype among proponents of false conspiracy theories that the 2020 election was rigged, a long-awaited report on a voluntary “canvassing” effort by voters in Maricopa County landed with a thud on Wednesday when the activists behind made a series of claims without any evidence to back them up – highlighted by two specific claims that almost immediately turned out to be false.

It is misleading. This is not true. And that will just unfortunately add more fuel to the fire which is not precise.

– Eddie Cook, Maricopa County Assessor

The report released by conservative activist and failed legislative candidate Liz Harris said more than a quarter of a million votes in the November election were suspect. The claims were based on information that volunteer canvassers – who joined the effort by filling out a form on the website – gleaned from thousands of voters, according to the report, many of whom said they had voted in the election but as the county election records show they did not vote. Others said they did not vote, but records show they voted in the election.

Harris’ report does not contain any corroborating information that could be used to verify the allegations. He indicated that the prospecting team can provide affidavits under oath to support the findings. But Harris did not provide these affidavits to the Arizona mirror, and hung up without answering questions when contacted by phone.


The report does not provide any names or addresses that could be used to verify the voters’ alleged allegations, nor does it indicate that the prospecting team verified their allegations against county records.

Maricopa County recorder Stephen Richer said Harris had not provided any affidavits or other corroborating evidence to his office either.

Richer said he reached out to Harris to discuss his efforts and concerns. The two met in March and he asked her to provide him with some examples of the alleged problems his team had found – he suggested an initial list of 100 incidents – so his office could look into them.

Maricopa County Assessor Eddie Cook also spoke with Harris about his efforts several weeks ago. Both are members of the precinct committee for Legislative District 17, where Harris ran for a legislative seat last year, and Cook approached her to discuss the solicitation and request data. He agreed to pass several questions from her to Richer – one related to the disproved conspiracy theory that the county’s ballot tabulation machines were connected to the Internet during the election, the recorder said – and hoped that would persuade her to provide data that could be used to prove or disprove her claims.

Neither official has ever received any data from Harris.

Cook said he emailed Harris again after posting his report and informed her that they had found two serious errors on his report covers, and requested information that could be used to investigate his allegations regarding his allegations. She did not provide any information, Cook said.

“That was the danger that I didn’t want to happen because it will spread nationwide, and that’s incorrect,” Cook said of the bogus claim on the cover of the Harris report. “It’s misleading. This is not true. And that will just unfortunately add more fuel to the fire which is not precise.

Within minutes, specific claims turned out to be false

Only two allegations in the report included information that could be used to verify them. Both were found to be blatantly false within minutes of their release.

“Wednesday represents the first two data points we’ve ever seen on Liz’s efforts,” Richer said, referring to the Harris report. “Oh-for-two is not a good place to start.”

Problems with Harris’s claim about Goodyear’s address, which appeared on the cover of the report, were quickly discovered. ABC15 reporter Garrett Archer highlighted on Twitter that the lot contained a house and that the county property records clearly indicated the owner.

Harris’ group responded by republishing the report with a different cover image purporting to show another address where a ballot was cast from vacant land. This second address, in Tempe, is currently vacant land, according to county officials.

But before that, it was a mobile home park. Cook and Richer released a joint statement Friday morning showing an aerial photo of the park. The appraiser’s office said the property was sold in February 2020, a month after a demolition permit was filed for the property. The property changed hands again in March of this year.

Elections Department spokeswoman Megan Gilbertson told the Mirror that 15 people were already registered to vote at this address. The ballot mentioned in the Harris report was from a former resident of the mobile home park who registered to vote there in 2016 and requested that his advance poll for 2020 be mailed to a temporary address , which is permitted by law, Gilbertson said.

Harris’s report was replete with other allegations of suspected fraud or questionable votes in the 2020 election, although none were attached to the names or addresses of voters that could be used to verify them.

The prospecting team claimed to have attempted to contact 11,708 voters, ultimately obtaining information on 4,570 and personally interviewing 964, according to the report. Of those, 330 said they voted, but county records said they did not vote in the general election. Based on the figure of 505,709 registered voters in Maricopa County who did not vote in November, Harris’ group extrapolated and alleged that 173,104 voters “had their votes stolen.”

Harris provided no evidence that a single person voted that was not registered by the county.

The report also claimed that there were 96,389 “ghost votes”. The figure is based on 164 people the Harris group said they identified who had postal votes from their addresses cast by people who were unknown to them and who did not live in their homes. Again, the report did not provide any evidence that such “ghost votes” were cast.

Because there isn’t even the slightest proof or evidence, Richer said the allegations shouldn’t be taken seriously. He noted that previous audits and investigations have shown the election to be accurate and unaffected by fraud.

“So far, no specific claim has been made. Two have been proposed. Zero was precise. So far we don’t have a problem, ”he said of the Harris report.

It is not known what attempts, if any, Harris and his group made to verify the claims they made in their report. Harris submitted two requests for records to the clerk’s office earlier this year – one in March for voter records throughout 2020 and the changes that were made to those records, and another in June that sought a plethora information on county election providers and the printing and layout of general election ballots.

Due to the magnitude of these requests, the registrar’s office forwarded them to the Maricopa County District Attorney’s Office for review. Recorder’s office spokeswoman Ilene Haber said both requests were still under review and Harris had not yet received any files from them.

Harris’s efforts are separate from the so-called Maricopa County 2020 election audit that Senate Speaker Karen Fann ordered. Harris, however, has been a staunch supporter of Fann’s review and an enthusiastic promoter of false allegations that the election was rigged against former President Donald Trump.

The audit team had originally planned to conduct a survey itself, but Fann indefinitely suspended the proposal after the US Department of Justice warned it could violate laws on voter intimidation in the Voting. Rights Act of 1965.

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85% in B.C. have first dose of vaccine, hospitalizations continue to rise Wed, 08 Sep 2021 00:26:40 +0000

VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) – Eighty-five percent of eligible people in British Columbia have now received a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, but the number of people hospitalized and in intensive care because of the virus continues to rise.

On Tuesday, the province reported 255 people were hospitalized, up from 215 on Friday. Of these, 126 are in intensive care, compared to 118.

Fifteen other people died during the 96-hour period. Six deaths occurred in the Interior Health Region, four in Island Health, three in Fraser Health and two in Vancouver Coastal Health.

There were 2,425 new infections over the Labor Day weekend. There were 695 on Friday, 634 on Saturday, 563 on Sunday and 533 on Monday. About a third of the cases were in the Interior Health Region. Northern Health – where new restrictions were introduced last week due to an “explosion” of cases seen 312.

Of those 12 and older, 85.1 percent have received an injection and 77.6 percent are fully immunized.

There are new outbreaks at Louis Brier Home and Hospital in Vancouver, Kamloops Hamlets in Westsyde, and Joseph Creek Care Village in Cranbrook. Outbreaks have been declared over at Peace Arch Hospital, Heritage Village and Hawthorn Park. The total number of active outbreaks in long-term care and care facilities is now 21.

This province update comes on the same day officials announced more details on the vaccination card, including where proof of immunization will be required, how British Columbians can access their records, and how businesses are expected to verify customer information.

One-shot proof will be required from September 13 to enter places like cinemas and pubs. As of October 24, only fully immunized people will be allowed in these facilities.

Provincial health worker Dr Bonnie Henry and Premier John Horgan have hinted that this system could move the province to Phase 4 of the reopening plan – which could have started on September 7 but was suspended due to rates of infection, transmission, and hospitalizations.

“There is a feeling in the wider community that we would rather have COVID behind us. We are tired, we are exasperated, we are frustrated, we can continue to discuss how we feel – but we also need to continue to focus on what we are doing today to prepare for tomorrow and that is why we presented the vaccination card. – so that we can continue to maintain the economy, we can continue to give hope to people that there is an end to this if they take the appropriate steps to protect themselves, ”said Horgan.

“It’s taking individual action for collective benefit. I hope all British Columbians will hear this message and take the necessary steps to get vaccinated.

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COVID-19 cases rise after Sturgis motorcycle rally Fri, 03 Sep 2021 22:29:51 +0000

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More than half a million people attended the annual motorcycle rally in Sturgis, South Dakota last month. Scott Olson / Getty Images
  • COVID-19 cases in South Dakota have increased since the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally ended on August 15.
  • However, health experts say it can be difficult to measure exactly how many cases are directly linked to the event attended by more than 500,000 people.
  • They say security protocols must be in place at all major public gatherings, including college football games this fall.

The annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally drew an estimated 525,000 people over a 10-day period in the small town of Stugis in rural Meade County, South Dakota.

The event took place August 6-15 amid the global COVID-19 pandemic and a recent increase in cases due to the Delta variant.

There were no rules requiring the use of face masks or physical distancing between participants.

Now, in the weeks since the rally began, COVID-19 cases in South Dakota have risen sharply, according to data compiled by The New York Times.

The 7-day average of COVID-19 cases in the state was 54 on August 6. In September, it stood at 434.

Meade County is now considered a COVID-19 hotspot, with a more than 100% increase in cases over the past 2 weeks. The Associated Press reports that contact tracers from five states recorded 178 cases of COVID-19 among people who attended the 2021 rally.

This is not the first time that the Sturgis rally has been linked to a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases.

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have traced at least 649 cases to the event in 2020. Another study by economists who tracked data from the cell phones of rally participants estimated that the The event could have been responsible for up to 266,000 cases.

It is unclear, however, whether the recent spike in cases and the 2021 rally are related.

Doug Schultz, spokesperson for the Minnesota Department of Public Health, told Healthline that 24 Minnesota residents were identified as likely to have developed COVID-19 during the Sturgis rally.

“Anytime people are in large gatherings, and especially if they are not vaccinated, wearing masks or practicing social distancing, there is an increased risk of the virus spreading,” Schultz noted .

However, he added, “the impact of a single event like this on the total number of cases is difficult, if not impossible to assess, given that the SARS CoV-2 virus and the Delta variant still circulate widely in our communities. “

“Sturgis had everything it needed for a super broadcast event and that seems to be what happened,” Brian Castrucci, DrPH, epidemiologist and CEO of the Beaumont Foundation, an organization, told Healthline. defense of public health.

“What’s alarming about Sturgis is the challenge: ‘We know there’s this risk, but we’re going to do it anyway.’ They could have had a mask warrant or vaccination requirements, ”Castrucci said. “What we were hoping for was that the organizers would have met with public health experts and discussed how to organize the event while minimizing the risks.”

“We had already ‘learned’ the lessons of the Sturgis rally last year when it caused epidemics across the country,” Dr. William Schaffner, infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee, told Healthline. . “We obviously haven’t adopted the basic concepts.”

“When a large number of unvaccinated, unmasked people congregate tightly for a week, that’s the recipe for a super-spreading event. The lesson is not to allow such events to happen, ”he said.

However, Daniel C. Bucheli, communications director for the South Dakota Department of Health, told Healthline that “COVID-19 spikes follow a national trend seen in all states, not just South Dakota. This is similar to the same pattern we saw in last year’s season, and cases are increasing nationwide considering the Delta variant. “

Bucheli said South Dakota officials are “not concerned” about the long-term impact of the Sturgis rally on public health in South Dakota.

“Whenever large crowds gather there is a potential for the virus to spread,” he said. “To date, we have only linked 66 cases of COVID-19 to participation in the Sturgis Rally. Given that this event hosted well over 500,000 participants, we believe that increased awareness of COVID-19 and the use of mitigation strategies worked – this, in addition to having vaccines and tests easily. available during the event. “

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem criticized the 2020 studies linking the Sturgis rally to the spread of COVID-19 and defended the 2021 event, telling Fox News: “We’re just allowing people to do personal choices and having personal responsibility for when they want to get together, when they want to get together and spend time outdoors, and enjoy their way of life.

Noem also attended the 2021 rally, participating – vaccinated, but unmasked – in a charity race.

“Any government official who cares about the health of their people would not want this kind of event in their state,” Castrucci said.

On the flip side, he noted, the Sturgis rally should not come under criticism as other important and risky events take place as well.

This includes the celebratory rally in July for the Milwaukee Bucks winning the NBA Championship or Penn State’s next football game, which will be played in front of a large crowd at Beaver Stadium this weekend with no vaccinations or COVID-19 testing required from fans. . Masks will be compulsory in indoor locations.

“It is important not to play in the politicization of the pandemic,” said Castrucci. “There is nothing unique about Sturgis per se. If this was a ballet recital attended by Democrats, it would be the same situation.

“Any event involving a large number of people without a mask warrant or vaccination requirement is really just throwing gas on the fire,” he said. “As long as we describe this as a political problem and not as a public health problem, more [the pandemic] keep on going.”

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Some Manitoba businesses choose to limit service instead of checking customer immunization status Tue, 31 Aug 2021 21:36:34 +0000

Some business owners in Manitoba are choosing to partially shut down or ignore provincial vaccine requirements for fear of invading privacy and limiting their customers’ right to choose for themselves.

Damian Penner, the owner of Rocco’s Pizza in Steinbach, Man., Says he will close his dining room starting September 3 when public health orders go into effect that require all patrons of indoor and outdoor restaurants and bars. are fully vaccinated.

“Being in the hospitality industry, we are of service to people, and for us that means being fair and just and serving everyone at the same level,” he said.

“When you see that there are individuals that you cannot serve at the same level, but still as a business asking for their support, this is not a business plan that we ever intended. follow.”

Penner, who is a Steinbach city councilor, said the restaurant will remain open for take-out and deliveries, which will likely hurt results.

Some companies find it invasive to ask people for proof of their immunization, including the owner of MORFIT. (Rachel Bergen / CBC)

“It is a success. But it is something that out of respect for all individuals, it is something that we are ready to accept,” he said.

Penner says the surrounding community was very supportive of his decision.

Less than half of eligible people in Hanover’s health district, which surrounds Steinbach, have been vaccinated. In the city itself, 61 percent have been vaccinated.

As of Tuesday, 82.1% of eligible people in the province had received a dose of the vaccine and 76.8% both.

Restaurants are not the only businesses impacted by new public health orders.

Vaccination is also required for indoor theaters, dance and symphony events, cinemas, casinos, bingo halls, ALV lounges, nightclubs and all other permitted premises.

Indoor and outdoor sporting events and paid concerts will remain reserved for fully vaccinated people.

Children too young to be vaccinated are allowed to go to restaurants, theaters and other events with a vaccinated adult.

Proof of vaccination will also be required to visit fitness centers, gymnasiums, and indoor sports and recreational facilities. Recreational sports for young people are excluded, but parents, coaches and staff will need to be vaccinated.

The vaccine mandate and the reintroduced mask mandate for indoor public spaces are a response to the highly transmissible delta variant, which, if left unchecked, would overwhelm the province’s health system, the provincial modeling suggests.

A Winnipeg gym owner said on his website that staff would not check vaccination cards.

Stuart Klassen, the owner of MORFIT, which has a location in St. Boniface and another in City Place, says it would be illegal to ask for this information.

“MORFIT will not request or verify COVID-19 vaccination status, nor will we ask for proof of negative medical tests of any kind before entering our facilities,” he wrote in a letter to the gym members.

Klassen declined an interview.

The province says enforcement officials will continue to work with companies to provide advice on how to comply with public health orders.

Businesses that violate public health orders can be fined $ 5,000.

“In the best interest”

Many companies are not challenging public health orders, including another gymnasium in Winnipeg.

Michelle Braithwaite, manager of Fit Club West on Corydon Avenue, says she believes public health orders will help keep people safe.

“If the government asks us to do this, I truly believe it is in the best interest of… our members, and for their safety and for ourselves,” she said.

Michelle Braithwaite says she will check the immunization cards as this will ensure her safety, the safety of her staff and the gym members at Fit Club West. (Michelle Braithwaite / Facebook)

Only a few members of his gym have reached out to tell him that they are not fully immunized and that they are unhappy with his position.

“I’m just letting them know it’s not forever. Nothing is forever. And I also let them know to hold your head up and be positive and whatever it is, in the end. of the day, we here at the club will work with you. We are not trying to work against you, “she said.

Braithwaite says she wants to do whatever she can to stay open and avoid another lockdown.

“This is very important to me and my staff because we’re not just your regular gym… you don’t sit on a bike and wonder what to do next. As soon as you walk through those doors we take care for you, “she said.

On September 3, many business owners will need to ask customers for proof of vaccination.

For some, it won’t be a difficult decision, while others don’t like the position it puts them in. 2:18

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]]> 0 STA thanks the forestry department for the quick verification of the cause of the recent traffic jam Fri, 27 Aug 2021 23:02:24 +0000

The mini traffic jam that occurred in the Kapit area on August 21, 2021. – Photo via WhatsApp / Koh Kumbong.

MIRI (August 28): The Sarawak Timber Association (STA) thanks the Sarawak Forest Department Sarawak (SFD) for confirming that the traffic jam at the Baleh hydroelectric dam site was caused by wood debris pushed into the river by heavy and prolonged rains.

In a press release yesterday, the STA thanked the SFD and other agencies for promptly carrying out a preliminary ground check and aerial surveillance in connection with the reported standoff.

“This sparked an uproar from various parties and the blame was placed only on logging companies carrying out timber harvesting operations in timber licenses in the Baleh watershed upstream of the Baleh Dam site.

“STA wishes to clarify that the timber harvesting operation in the Baleh watershed is only carried out after the approval of the SFD and the issuance of permits,” the statement said.

In addition, the press release states that the STA considers it necessary to emphasize the difference between salvage logging and selective logging.

“Salvage logging is approved to minimize loss of commercial timber in the area that will be submerged. Salvage logging is only carried out for government approved projects such as the development of hydroelectric dams.

“This is not a common practice in a normal harvest where selective logging is carried out, and STA would like to stress that STA members do their best to manage the forests in their concessions in accordance with international standards. “the statement added.

Therefore, the STA expressed its deep concern about the negative portrayal of the forest industry in this incident and the impact this could have on the reputation of the forest industry and its ripple effects resulting in loss of resources. jobs that will affect the livelihoods of the people of Sarawak.

“In this regard, STA urges all stakeholders to engage and contribute collectively to overcome these challenges. The STA also fully supports the decision of the Sarawak government to form a special task force committee to fully investigate the incident and find solutions to minimize the risk of it happening again in the future.

“STA will do its best to help the Sarawak government alleviate the problems by being part of the task force,” he concluded.

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Apps Help Users View Covid-19 Vaccination Status And Find Similar Spirits Wed, 25 Aug 2021 13:30:00 +0000 More and more smartphone apps are adding features that allow people to view their Covid-19 vaccination status and search for other users and businesses who are vaccine-favored.

The Grindr LLC dating app said that starting in September, it will allow users to add their vaccination status to their profiles and filter their searches to find other vaccinated people. Expedia Group Member Vrbo Vacation Home Rental Company Inc.,

This fall plans to allow hosts on its platform to share their requirements for tenants to be vaccinated or tested for Covid-19.

And OpenTable Inc., whose restaurant reservation service already allows restaurants to post Covid-19 vaccine requirements, this month added a “verified for entry” label that customers can obtain by showing proof of vaccination, for example, to any participating restaurant. Starting next month, OpenTable will also allow users to obtain the beacon by obtaining a digital vaccine card from Clear, a platform operated by Secure Identity LLC.

Restaurant reservation operator OpenTable will soon allow users to get a “verified for entry” label through a partnership with Clear.


OpenTable Inc.

These measures follow similar initiatives from companies such as Match Group LLC’s Hinge Inc. and Tinder dating apps, which allow users to share their vaccination status on their profiles, and review the company Yelp. Inc.,

which added two filters that allow users to search for restaurants where staff are fully vaccinated or businesses that require proof of vaccination from customers.

Some of the new features are aimed at users who want to avoid close contact with unvaccinated people, while others are designed to help individuals keep up with new vaccine requirements from local governments amid the surge in vaccine growth. cases of Covid-19 linked to the Delta variant. Cities like New York and San Francisco, for example, now require proof of vaccination for indoor activities.

“It really tries to be the most useful tool that we can be for our restaurants and also for our diners, because things change quickly,” said Debby Soo, Managing Director of OpenTable, which is part of Booking Holdings. . Inc.

“We are trying to make it as easy as possible for people to go out for dinner or take out food, and for restaurants to continue to pivot and survive this pandemic,” Soo added.

The distribution of badges “vaccinated” on user profiles could encourage other people to be vaccinated, according to the designers of digital experiments, who call the phenomenon “social proof”.

“If more people potentially demonstrate that they are vaccinated it could have a very good impact in encouraging other people to get vaccinated, because of this social proof you are starting to see that it becomes a norm,” he said. said Amy Lokey, senior vice president. President and Head of Global Design at ServiceNow,

Inc., which has developed a cloud-based platform to help businesses manage digital workflows.

Many of the features rely on people self-declaring their vaccination status, however giving users the option to misrepresent themselves, the designers said.

“Vaccinated” stickers on user profiles of dating platforms can be forged by adding a copy of the sticker to a profile photo, for example.

“It’s almost like the floodgates are open for potential bad players,” said Alex Levin, founding partner and chief strategy officer of L + R, a design and technology consultancy.

On the flip side, Mr. Levin said, business owners might not think about immediately updating their profile pages on Yelp or OpenTable with their vaccine requirements, relying on a panel instead. physical on the door.

The latest tech fixes could end up going down the drain as have Covid-19 exposure notification apps, said Albert Fox Cahn, founder and executive director of the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project, a protection group of New York-based privacy and civil rights.

But there are a lot of features that are a step in the right direction, Mr. Cahn said.

“One thing that’s nice about some of the vaccine credentials on dating apps, restaurant apps, is that we know it’s an exercise in trust,” he said. “We know it’s about trying to create a sense of community solidarity to get vaccinated. “

More from the experience report

Write to Ann-Marie Alcántara at

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