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Morning Brief: COVID Cases And Young People In LA, What Is Long COVID, A Queer Mercado

A sign at a vaccination booster shot clinic in San Rafael. Access has expanded significantly with the announcement that younger kids can start receiving the vaccine as soon as next week.
(Justin Sullivan
Getty Images)
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Good morning, L.A. It’s Nov. 19.

The old man yelling at a cloud was right for once — young people are the ones making up L.A. County’s new COVID cases.

The median age of someone testing positive for COVID-19 in our area now? Just 32 years old.

That’s thanks to young people hanging out socially, as well as intermingling in the workplace, according to the county’s public health director, Dr. Barbara Ferrer. “This is essentially a pandemic that is fueled by younger people,” she said.

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And the highest case rate is for those even younger, with unvaccinated teens nearly eight times more likely to test positive for COVID-19 than teens who've been vaxxed. Those teenagers without the vaccine have the highest positivity rate of any age group.

The county still has substantial transmission, though it hasn't seen a rise in cases in the weeks since Halloween. But as the case numbers go up, it’s the unvaccinated who will be the ones driving that increase. Unvaccinated people are 67 times more likely to be hospitalized than the vaccinated.

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Vaccinations remain key to fighting the pandemic, Ferrer stressed, especially with winter holidays and people traveling for those holidays.

But first-time vaccinations are going up, thanks largely to the approval of vaccines for 5- to 11-year-olds.

Meanwhile, racial disparities in vaccinations persist. The number of Black and Latino children who've been vaccinated is still less than a third as many as in other racial and ethnic groups.

So maybe give your friends a nudge to go get vaccinated if they don’t want to be in a pandemic anymore. A nudge to get a jab.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A., and stay safe out there.

What Else You Need To Know...

Weekend Reads

There's a lot going on in the world right now, and it’s hard enough to keep up with our day-to-day lives, let alone to stay current on the news. But if you have some time this weekend, here’s what you may have missed:

  • The 2028 Olympics are coming, and the city finally released its plans for dealing with the logistics. This ranges from who’s liable if there are cost overruns, to how the city plans to handle Olympics traffic. (LAist)
  • Guess how much federal funding that California's getting for public transit. If you guessed more than $0, guess again. (LAist)
  • Facebook is demanding that the LAPD stop using their platform to conduct social media surveillance, including the use of fake accounts. (The Guardian)
  • A new take on ethnic studies is coming into the classroom and onto the streets, thanks to a team of educators working to provide students with a more complete understanding of local history — including examining systems of power across time. (LAist)
  • The Staples Center is no more. Long live the exact same building, except now it’s going to be the Arena. (L.A. Times)
  • Santa Ana is distributing $6 million in prepaid Visa debit cards to 20,000 households from the most impoverished parts of the city. (La Opinión)
  • Bike traffic violations are getting decriminalized, with the L.A. County Board of Supervisors ordering a review of the "biased policing" by the Sheriff's Department in enforcing those laws. (L.A. Times)
  • If you tripped on the sidewalk lately, the city controller agrees with you that something needs to be done — a new audit from his office says L.A.'s approach to fixing sidewalks is "broken," "wasteful," and needs to be repaired. (LAist)
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Before You Go...

Jodie Sweetin, better known as Stephanie Tanner on ubiquitous 1980s sitcom Full House, is hosting an online late night comedy show this Friday. And she’s inviting one of her TGIF TV friends, Christine Lakin from Step By Step, to join her as her guest, while also participating in a variety of SNL-style sketches. Tickets start at 10 bucks.

Other events you could check out this weekend include burning off calories at the Great Los Angeles Walk, viewing the L.A. Zoo holiday lights, checking out the cars of tomorrow, buying affordable works from local artists, and listening to the next generation of film composers. We’ve got all the details on this weekend’s events, right here.

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