BART offers free rides from Oakland COVID-19 vaccination site

Image of BART station
David McAllister/Staff
According to a BART press release, anyone who is vaccinated at the Oakland Coliseum vaccination site can receive a free BART ticket if they present their vaccination card with the corresponding date. The vaccination site itself is accessible to communities within the Oakland area that have the highest numbers of COVID-19 cases.

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BART is offering free rides home to users of Oakland Coliseum’s mass COVID-19 vaccination site, which opened Tuesday and is accessible from the Coliseum BART station.

Anyone who has received a COVID-19 vaccine will be provided a $7 BART ticket for free, which covers fares to all stations except the San Francisco International Airport. According to a BART press release, in order to receive the ticket, people who were vaccinated must simply present their vaccination card with a matching date.

“BART is hopeful the free rides home can be an additional incentive to encourage people to get their shots and will be helpful for anyone who might have concerns about the costs of travelling to the site,” said BART spokesperson Chris Filippi in an email.

Filippi added that BART is providing wheelchair accessible carts that loop between the pedestrian bridge/BART elevator and the vaccination site and can be used by anyone in need of assistance.

In a press release from her office, Rebecca Kaplan, Oakland vice mayor, said the vaccination site is accessible to Oakland communities most affected by COVID-19, as the site is located in racially diverse neighborhoods with the highest COVID-19 positivity rates. California Gov. Gavin Newsom added that many essential workers reside within the Oakland community, one of the most socioeconomically challenged communities in the U.S., making the vaccination site important to ensure no communities are left behind.

Kaplan added that the city has been working with the Oakland Coliseum, Oakland Athletics and the Alameda County Public Health Department to vaccinate more of the local community as quickly as possible.

“This new vaccination site will provide thousands of shots each day and is a terrific step towards protecting our community from COVID-19,” said Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland in a newsletter.

The site is being operated by the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services in conjunction with the Federal Emergency Management Agency. They will provide resources as well as federal staffing and operational support to establish new community vaccination centers.

The vaccination site is part of the effort to create 100 sites nationwide in President Joe Biden’s first 100 days.

“These new sites will help us get available supply to some of the California communities most in need,” Newsom said in a press release from his office. “I thank the Biden Administration for standing with us as we continue our efforts to safely, swiftly and equitably vaccinate all Californians.”

Contact Claire Daly and Mia Scher at [email protected].