“This pandemic cannot end unless we act collectively with an unprecedented commitment to our shared humanity. The vaccine must be distributed to everyone everywhere. We cannot rest or truly recover until there is fair distribution to every corner of the world,” the Duke of Sussex, 36, said while appearing on location at the SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. “The mission in front of us is one we cannot afford to fail out and that’s what tonight is about. The virus does not respect borders and access to the vaccine cannot be determined by geography. It must be accepted as a basic right for all, and that is our starting point.”
Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, are serving as campaign chairs for the event, which will premiere on May 8. The concert’s taping marked Harry’s first public appearance in America since he attended his grandfather Prince Philip’s funeral in the U.K. last month. Meghan, who did not attend the funeral because she is pregnant, also stayed home with the pair’s 11-month-old son, Archie, during the concert.
Though she could not travel to England due to physician’s orders, Meghan, 39, honored her husband’s grandfather by sending a handwritten note and wreath along with Harry to lay at the Duke of Edinburgh’s memorial. Philip died on April 9 at age 99. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, he was not able to receive a state funeral.
In his address, Harry thanked the frontline workers who have worked to end the pandemic over the course of the last year.
“You served and sacrificed, put yourselves in harm’s way and with bravery knowing the costs. We owe you an incredible depth of gratitude. Thank you,” he said on Sunday.
The royal also added that everyone needs to be aware of the world outside their personal situation in order to end the pandemic.
“None of us should be comfortable thinking that we could be fine when so many others are suffering,” he said. “We need to lift up all of humanity and make sure that no person or community is left behind. What we do in this moment will stand in history and tonight, we stand in solidarity with the millions of families across India who are battling a devastating second wave.”
Other celebrities present at the taping included Jennifer Lopez, Chrissy Teigen, Ben Affleck and Eddie Vedder. The concert will be hosted by Selena Gomez and will also feature President Joe Biden, First Lady Dr. Jill Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
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