An open letter to President Joe Biden, Gov. Gavin Newsom, Health Secretary Mark Ghaly, Dr. Tomas Aragon, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Sen. Alex Padilla, Barbara Ferrer, Rep. Mike Garcia, Sen. Scott Wilk, Assemblywoman Suzette Valladares, Supervisor Kathryn Barger, Mayor Bill Miranda and anyone else who has any say about who is to be vaccinated:
I write to you as a resident of Santa Clarita, a special educator of individuals with special needs, a Special Olympics coach, and most personally the father of Sean — a young man with autism, developmental disabilities and respiratory issues.
My wife and I received our first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine this morning, due to our age and the fact that we are primary caregivers to Sean. We are relieved to be starting this process, but are left with a huge question, which I address to you now: “What about Sean and his peers in the special needs community? When do they get the protection priority that they are entitled to?”
These citizens and constituents of yours are more susceptible to contracting the virus due to inability to wear a mask, less-than-perfect personal hygiene practices and other issues. They also suffer from a variety of underlying health issues that make them strong candidates for poor outcomes if they contract the virus.
Finally, my worst nightmare is that Sean ends up in the hospital, and we are prevented from being with him. Sean, like many of his peers, would not understand the isolation and his reaction to the isolation could be disastrous.
Please, hear my plea, for Sean’s sake and on behalf of all other families who share my concern and fear for their vulnerable children. Give them access to vaccines sooner rather than later. Your treatment of these individuals will be an opportunity for you to demonstrate how our representatives take care of the least among us.
God bless you and guide you as you consider my request.
Sean, Pat and Linda Coskran