Pageland buses in specific category of frontline workers to get COVID-19 shots

PAGELAND, S.C. — In South Carolina’s race to vaccinate, hundreds of people were lined up Wednesday morning in Pageland to get their shots, and they all had one thing in common: They work in manufacturing, grocery stores, or other large businesses with lots of employees.

The town saw a need to reach people in those jobs who often don’t have a chance to take a day off work to get the vaccine.

The community not only recognized how tough it is for some people to take time off to get the shot but also, in smaller towns, the vaccine isn’t available at every corner drug store like it is in bigger cities.

First Baptist Church in Pageland was providing buses to shuttle people from work on Wednesday to the community center, and then back so workers could get the vaccine without missing a day from their jobs.

Organizers had 550 doses to give out.

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There were people being brought in from grocery stores, the Walmart distribution center on Highway 601, and a major lumber company, Tucker Lumber, as well.

The owner of that company, Mark Tucker, told South Carolina reporter Greg Suskin that it was a priority for him.

“To be able to come here and get our people taken care of, which is our most valuable resource, our people -- we can’t do our job if our people are sick or unable to come in to work,” he said.

A total of about 20 local businesses signed up to be part of the event, which focused on a specific category of frontline workers, reaching people that can be tough to reach.