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An open letter to the Cambridge Community


The COVID crisis is back, and this puts our community at a crossroads.

Whilst we acknowledge that the elimination strategy has held New Zealand in good stead to date and we have enjoyed relatively normal lives until recently, the reality is we are going to have to learn how to live with Covid19, Delta and the new variants that will emerge.

Our first and best strategy is vaccination.

The Cambridge Business Chamber promotes itself in a leadership role and during lockdown has been working in the crisis management space and looking to economic recovery initiatives that we can implement in support of our business and wider community.

The Cambridge Chamber will be taking a more active role in promoting vaccination, encouraging and supporting mask use, and safer ways of doing business.

The Chamber has asked for and has received transparency of our district’s current vaccination rate.

As of 9am on 24 August 2021, 25,087 vaccinations had been delivered to Waipa residents; Of which 37.8% have had at least one dose and 16.9% of the Waipa’s eligible population is fully vaccinated.

This compares to a total of 200,349 vaccinations for the Waikato Region 39.3% (at least 1 dose) and 19.4%( 2nd dose) for the Waikato Region.

National statistics as of 31 August 2021 - Fully vaccinated: 26.7%, One dose: 23.4% ,and Not vaccinated: 49.9%
We are doing OK, but we could be doing better!

The Chamber has asked Waipa District Council and other relevant stakeholders to step up, to assist and help drive vaccination rates.

· To set goals and timelines for Waipa vaccinations
· To expedite access and enable our people to be vaccinated
· Support the vaccination messaging to increase reach to all our Waipa’s eligible residents

We need our eyes on the real target; getting as many people vaccinated as possible, as quickly as possible. In short, accelerating the vaccination programme in our district.

What must be done to make this happen or what are the alternatives?

Accessibility to vaccination is vital. We have had many people tell us they are being asked to reschedule appointments, with some not being able to book appointments now until late October.

Unichem Family pharmacy and the Cambridge Medical Centre have been working tirelessly to have our residents vaccinated. A phone call to these sites to book a vaccine might see an earlier appointment than what may be showing on bookmyvaccine. Nga Hau e Wha Marae in Cambridge is operating on just three days a week.

We ask, how do we move the Marae to open seven days as opposed to its current three days a week for vaccinations here in Cambridge?

The Chamber, would like to work collaboratively with Waipa District Council to encourage our communities to become vaccinated, to ensure our communities have access to the vaccine in a timely manner, to provide for the well-being, including the economic well-being of our communities.

In that spirit, for our community, we ask you to do your part.
1. Mask Up: Respect our business owners and your neighbours. When a local business asks you to mask up to enter their shop, recognise that it’s not their rule and they’re doing the best they can to stay open and survive.
2. Get Vaccinated: Stop the spread.
If you have put off getting vaccinated, reconsider whether it’s time to do your part to defend our community.

We urge you to take responsibility for your choice. If you are unsure or need more information, please contact your medical professional for information and advice.
Cambridge has a well-deserved reputation as a community that comes together in times of need and takes care of its own.

To those of you who have been eligible and able to be vaccinated already and have done so, thank you!

To those who are eligible and yet to do so, please act now to help make this the last time we have restrictions on how we interact with each other and our ability to live our lives, do our jobs, and enjoy our community.
· Protect our community
· Respect your neighbours & your business community
· Please get vaccinated

Thank you for your support of our Cambridge Community,
Kelly Bouzaid
CEO Cambridge Business Chamber


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