The Trump administration intended to vaccinate all “Santas” as “essential” to keep the Christmas business tradition alive. The plan was thwarted.
The scene of Santa Claus sitting in front of a line of guys waiting to place an order is a long commercial tradition in United States. A business.
It was with the intention of keeping it in the midst of the restrictions imposed by the pandemic that an idea came up: treating people who dress up as Santa Claus in shopping malls and shops. as essential, and offer them the possibility of getting vaccinated early against COVID-19.
However, that plan finally it cannot be carried out. As reported by the BBC, the US health authorities confirmed that the campaign has been scrapped.
At the same time, the Department of Health and Human Services (HSS) denied to The Wall Street Journal that the head of the agency, Alex Azar, had knowledge of “Santa Claus plan”.
The initial idea, which was developed by an official of the agency named Michael Caputo, consisted of a $ 250 million campaign which consisted essentially of an exchange of favors.
On the one hand, the actors playing the role were promised early access to the vaccine so they could play the role heading into the Christmas season.
In exchange for this, they would be asked to advertise the vaccination campaign, they will publicly praise the government’s efforts to arrive so quickly with the vaccine, and will help convince the population to get vaccinated.
“This is extremely disappointing news,” said Ric Erwin, the head of the Fraternal Order of Santa Claus with True Beard, to The Wall Street Journal. “It was our last chance to have a Christmas 2020, and now it seems that it will not happen,” he added.
According to the American economic newspaper, .Caputo told Erwin in August that there would be a vaccine ready to distribute to essential workers in the country for Thanksgiving, which falls on the last Thursday of November.
“If you and your colleagues are not essential workers, I don’t know who would qualify for that designation,” Caputo said in a phone call they had, which Erwin recorded and handed over to The Wall Street Journal.
The head of the association that brought together the Santa Claus responded that, since they were doing Santa Claus a favor, “Santa Claus would know how to be grateful”.
The conversation ended with Caputo in a state of joy, stating that he “couldn’t wait to tell the news “to the president. “He is going to love it,” he completed.
Caputo, the ideologue of the plan who worked as an Assistant Secretary at health agency HSS, announced last month that he would take time off. The news broke shortly after Caputo posted a video on Facebook where he accused government scientists of being part of a “act of treason” against Donald Trump.
Without the vaccine, Erwin acknowledged that the job opportunities for him and his colleagues who work for Santa Claus will be minimum during the holiday season. They are discussing the possibility of holding virtual events, as well as doing some face-to-face events behind a plastic screen, or inside some kind of bubble.