New vaccination sites open in Marshall, Worthington to target food processing workers

The expanse of JBS pork processing plant sits at the northeast corner of Worthington, Minn., September 4, 2019. (Photo by Courtney Perry/For the Washington Post) (Courtney Perry/For the Washington Post/Getty Images / Getty Images)

The state of Minnesota opened two new community vaccination sites in Worthington and Marshall, Minnesota Monday in an effort to vaccinate food processing and agriculture workers.

The Governor’s office announced the two new community vaccination sites, which will be located in at the MERIT Center in Marshall and the Worthington Event Center in Worthington.

The vaccines are available to all eligible Minnesotans, which now includes frontline workers in food processing and agriculture.

Worthington made headlines in April after an outbreak of COVID-19 cases among the workers at the JBS pork processing plant. The plant temporarily closed and re-opened in May with what the company described as added safety measures for employees.

United Food and Commercial Workers Local 663, the union that represents the JBS workers, said 19 employees were infected at one time in April.

The Worthington and Marshall vaccination locations are temporary, the Governor’s Office says. Sites currently set up in Minneapolis, Duluth, Rochester, Bloomington, St. Paul, St. Cloud and Mankato are permanent.

The state of Minnesota offered the following information about how to sign up for your vaccine:

Minnesotans who have not received a vaccine should sign up for the Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Connector, which will notify users about vaccine opportunities near them. Users currently eligible for the vaccine may be randomly selected for an appointment at a Community Vaccination Program location. Minnesotans may be contacted directly if they can make an appointment.

Minnesotans can sign up at Minnesotans unable to sign up online or who require translation assistance can call 833-431-2053 between 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday to sign up over the phone.

In addition to the Vaccine Connector, Minnesotans can search for local providers, contact information and scheduling opportunities on the state’s vaccine finder map: