West Virginia To Give Guns As Vaccination Incentive

West Virginia will be giving away guns as an incentive for residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Gov. Jim Justice announced the new incentive lottery program during a news conference on Tuesday.

The drawings will run from Father’s Day on June 20 to Aug. 4, and will include a variety of prizes from cash to firearms and trucks.

During the Father’s Day drawing, the state will give away five custom hunting rifles and five custom hunting shotguns, The Hill reports.

Justice said the state will also give away two brand-new, custom outfitted trucks and five lifetime hunting and fishing licenses. Residents could win one of 25 getaways to West Virginia’s state parks, as well.

During the June 20 lottery, one person will also win $1 million. Justice said the state will give away $1 million for five weeks in a row. One person will win a grand prize of $1.58 million on Aug. 4, and a runner-up will win $588,000.

There will also be giveaways for two full, four-year scholarships for any institution in the state to eligible students ages 12 to 25.

Justice said that to be eligible, all residents need to do is get their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Anyone who has already been vaccinated is automatically eligible to win.

So far, 51.1% of West Virginians have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to the state’s health department — or approximately 915,000 people — with 41.2% fully vaccinated. 

Forbes reports that West Virginia’s giveaway isn’t the only vaccine incentive related to guns: Illinois has also set up a mobile vaccination site at a shooting range in the state and is giving away 100 free targets to anyone who gets the vaccine there.

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