LOS ANGELES, CA – Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis, First District, released the following statement in response to President Joe Biden’s announcement on new federal actions to protect Americans battle the Omicron variant:

“I want to thank President Biden for continuing to take the necessary steps to respond to this pandemic and for always telling the truth to the American people. Unfortunately, Omicron is spreading rapidly throughout the County and the country at the same time as many residents are preparing to gather with their loved ones for upcoming holidays, and many are rightly concerned about spreading this virus while celebrating with those close to them.

Fortunately, as the President said, there are steps that can be taken to make you and your families feel safer. I join his call in encouraging everyone to get vaccinated, get a booster shot, and wear a mask. Additionally, when gathering with others, it’s critical to get tested. That’s why I applaud the President for announcing his initiative to send half a billion rapid at-home tests directly to people’s households beginning in January, in addition to making rapid tests covered by insurance as well as available at federally qualified health centers. I am committed to working with this Administration so that everyone, regardless of where they live or how much they make, can have access to these tests.

I am further encouraged by the steps the President is taking to provide support to hospitals and their workers, who are understandably burned out after nearly two years responding to this pandemic. These steps, in addition to efforts to keep schools and businesses open, will help us avoid the most serious impacts that we’ve seen from prior surges.

As President Biden said, this is not March 2020. We have powerful tools now – such as vaccines, boosters, and widespread testing – that weren’t available two years ago. We just need to utilize them and stay responsible, and we can avoid devastating and unnecessary loss. I will continue working with our federal, state, and local partners to keep our residents healthy and safe.

Angelenos can find vaccination sites by visiting: www.VaccinateLACounty.com (English) or www.VacunateLosAngeles.com (Spanish). For testing services in Los Angeles County, residents are encouraged to visit www.covid19.lacounty.gov/testing/.”