WASHINGTON, D.C. (NBC News) – President Joe Biden says “masks – not vaccinations – are the single best defense against covid-19.”
The president made those remarks Saturday in a video statement to a meeting of the U.S Conference of Mayors’ winter conference.
Shreveport Mayor Adrian Perkins, who serves as vice chair of communications on the Conference’s Transportation and Communication Committee, was featured with other committee members on C-SPAN Saturday at a breakout meeting with Pete Buttigieg, Secretary of Transportation designate.
Perkins said, they discussed Buttigieg’s “plans for transportation and how we can make our cities smarter.”
In Biden’s speech, he talked about his administration’s plans to deal with the pandemic, and also highlighted his economic recovery plan.
The president promised his administration was available “any time, any day’ to help local officials with whatever they need.
“In the next few months,” Biden told the mayos, “masks – not vaccinations – are the single best defense that we have against COVID-19. Medical experts say that by wearing masks, by wearing masks from now until April, we will save more than 50,000 lives. 50,000 lives. We’re asking American people to mask for the first 100 days.”
He also reiterated that things are going to get worse before they get better, but again promised transparency.
“Above all, I’ll always level with you, I promise you, and the brutal truth is that things are going to get worse the next several months before they get better,” Biden said. “We didn’t get into this mess overnight. It’s going to take time for us to turn things around. We also have to act now. Now with urgency and unity, as the United States of America.”
He also discussed his goal of 100 million shots in his first 100 days.
“I’ve just released, we’ve just released our national strategy to be COVID-19. The plan mounts an aggressive vaccination campaign to meet our goal of administering 100 million shots in the first 100 days,” he said.
The president said FEMA has been instructed to set up the first federally-supported community vaccination centers, with the goal of 100 centers in the next month.
Biden also discussed his two-step economic plan that includes direct cash payments, extended unemployment insurance, rent relief, food assistance and aid to small businesses, and unemployment insurance, rent relief, food assistance and aid to small businesses, and also includes $350 billion for state and local governments, to keep public employees on the job. meet whatever other needs cities might have.