scarborough vaccine clinic

Lineup for Scarborough pop-up vaccine clinic wraps around football field 4 times

A pop-up vaccine clinic that opened in Scarborough Thursday morning saw so many people show up to try and get their first dose that the lineup actually looped around a football field four times before 8 a.m.

Residents began waiting in line as early as midnight for the M1P pop-up, which is being held at the David and Mary Thomson Collegiate Institute on Thursday and Friday.

The clinic began distributing 1,500 tickets at 7 a.m. for people to return for same-day appointments and, according to the Scarborough Civic Action Network, all available tickets had been given out by 9:45 a.m.

Unfortunately, this is far from an isolated incident.

The vaccination rollout in Scarborough has been something of a disaster since the beginning, as the area has a high concentration of COVID-19 cases and essential workers, yet not enough vaccines to quickly and effectively innoculate all those who want one.

Pop-up clinics for the M1G, M1J and M1L postal codes in Scarborough have seen similar lineups in the past two weeks, and demand for doses continues to outstrip supply.

It's for this reason that Ontario's COVID-19 advisory table has recommended allocating 50 per cent of available vaccines to hot spots around the city, but the provincial government is currently only allocating 25 per cent.

Residents and experts have also criticized the first-come-first-served model of the pop-ups, saying it disadvantages marginalized communities by requiring residents to wait for hours while more affluent neighbourhoods can easily book appointments online.

Toronto officials previously called on the province to allow hot spot residents aged 18 and up to register for vaccine appointments through the provincial booking system just like everyone else. 

But as that request has so far gone ignored, the only way for these communities to receive the jab remains lining up for as long as it takes.

Lead photo by

Scarborough Civic Action Network

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