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Story by KATU Staff - Story Source
Published on Tuesday March 9, 2021 - 10:19 PM

PORTLAND, Ore. — A union that represents grocery store workers across Oregon and Southwest Washington reacted to Governor Kate Brown getting the Johnson & Johnson shot this weekend, calling it a "vaccination stunt."

Brown was vaccinated at an OHSU clinic in Scappoose on Saturday.

The United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 555, which represents roughly 28,000 workers, says Governor Brown can choose how much interaction she has with the public, while thousands of frontline workers cannot. Put simply, they accused the governor of cutting in line.

Currently, those in Group 1A, educators, and people ages 65 and older are eligible for the vaccine. Brown, who is 60 years old, does not appear to be eligible base on the state guidelines.

The next group eligible for the shot will be people between the ages of 45 and 64 with underlying health conditions. That happens on March 29.

In Oregon, vaccinations for CDC-defined frontline workers, including grocery store workers, won't begin until May 1 at the latest.

Last week, Washington Governor Jay Inslee expanded eligibility to include grocery store workers, starting on March 22. The union urged Brown to make the same changes to the timeline, however, that call has not yet been answered.

KATU News has reached out to the governor's office several times to see if she is eligible to get the vaccine, but has not yet heard back. Brown's office said she publicly got the vaccine to show it's safe and effective.