Sikh Perspectives on COVID-19 Vaccination
To protect a larger community.
The Sikh Coalition, in partnership with the North American Sikh Medical and Dental Association and the Sikh Family Center, have urged all Sikhs to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their communities. They launched an extensive information campaign to help those within their community and beyond understand the best public health practices to keep us all safe.
Rucha Kaur, Sikh Coalition Community Development Director, explained the main barriers to Sikhs getting vaccinated as being similar to the challenges all communities are facing. She noted, “I think the challenges that exist in this community are not any different than they are in any other community. We are addressing myths around vaccines, we are addressing misinformation, concerns about variants, vaccine hesitancy, efficiency of vaccines, language access barriers, and other similar issues that affects almost all communities. We're striving to make sure that we're translating all of our work – that's one of our key objectives, because information is evolving so quickly, and we want to make sure that we offer the most up-to-date information that is available and accessible. At the end of the day, each community member is different, and their decision to take or not take the vaccine is entirely their own – it is not our place to tell them what to do. But our role is to ensure that we provide all the necessary information so they can make an informed decision about their choice” (https://ifyc.org/article/sikh-coalition-lead-vaccine-information-effort).
She went on to note that her Sikh believes have motivated her efforts to encourage vaccination. “Personally,” she said, “my understanding of Sikhism is that when you're in the fight for justice, you are fighting for injustice against everyone, not just for yourself. I think vaccination works similarly. It's not just for me, it is to protect a larger community.”