Community-Based, Labor and Advocacy Groups Present New Interactive Rapid Response Report on COVID-19 at The People’s Assembly on Race & Equity

07 May Community-Based, Labor and Advocacy Groups Present New Interactive Rapid Response Report on COVID-19 at The People’s Assembly on Race & Equity

LOS ANGELES, CA On Saturday, May 9th from 10 a.m. to12 p.m. Community Coalition, Advancement Project California, Brotherhood Crusade, Anti-Recidivism Coalition, CD Tech, Los Angeles Black Worker Center, LA Voice, Power California, SEIU 2015 and other community partners will present The People’s Assembly on Race, Equity & COVID-19. Moderated by Angela Rye, special guests include Bishop William Barber, Chris Paul, Kendrick Sampson, Yesi Ortiz, and Karim Webb with live performances by Aloe Blacc, Cedric The Entertainer, Las Cafeteras, and Ill Camille. This digital activation event will center the voices of real people—grocery workers, students, street vendors, formerly incarcerated people, and gang interventionists as well as influencers, journalists, and artists—to help highlight their concerns and develop solutions in the aftermath of this global crisis. 

COVID-19 has brought America face-to-face with its pervasive inequities. What we see in the news about a flattening of the curve may be true for wealthier whites, but that is not the case in low-income and Black and Latinx communities. In Los Angeles, race, class, and place are strongly linked. Generations of racial and economic segregation have resulted in the concentration of low-income and people of color in socioeconomically disadvantaged communities that have been exposed to toxic chemicals and other unhealthy land uses, failing infrastructure, and lack of access to services. Advancement Project California recently released How Race, Class, and Place Fuel a Pandemic, an interactive policy brief that shows how COVID-19 has shifted geographically and taken hold in predominantly Black and Latinx communities in Los Angeles. 

According to the research (which was based upon data released by the L.A. County Department of Public Health): 

  • Most of the early cases were found in Los Angeles’s historically wealthier and often whiter communities. 
  • By mid-April, the trajectory of COVID-19 cases changed, particularly in higher concentration Latinx and Black areas, with a much steeper growth factor in caseloads compared to communities with more white residents. 
  • By the end of April, Pacific Palisades, a predominantly white community, saw a 2x growth in case rates (from the beginning of the month) while Gramercy Place saw a 14.4x growth in case rates and Bell Gardens saw a 28.2x growth in case rates. 

Findings coincide with the conclusions from LACDPH’s report where Black, Latinx, NHPI, and low-income populations were the hardest hit residents for cases and deaths in the county. What this new interactive report from Advancement Project California does is show where the virus is moving over time and the urgency to address immediate needs as well as structural issues.

“These types of statistics are not new to us. Communities of color have long been fighting for equitable distribution of access to healthcare, education, criminal justice reforms, housing, jobs, and other resources that have been denied due to systemic racism. COVID-19 is merely shining a light on what we’ve already known to be true,” said Alberto Retana, President & CEO of Community Coalition.

“The COVID-19 crisis shows that one of the deadliest underlying conditions in America is systemic racism. Obviously, a virus like this doesn’t have intentionality, but we can now see that it has directionality and velocity and is using L.A.’s long-standing structures of racial segregation to fuel a second, deadlier chapter in communities of color,” said John Kim, Executive Director of Advancement Project California.

COVID-19 has exposed entrenched racial inequities and amplified xenophobic narratives. The gaping divide in our education system, barriers to healthcare, housing, employment, and technology, as well as the lack of a social safety net and voter suppression exacerbated by the pandemic speak to a broken system. To support communities of color throughout Los Angeles, a comprehensive list of recommendations will be presented as solutions that will address the immediate needs of residents.

Join us this Saturday for The People’s Assembly on Race, Equity & COVID-19 as we mobilize, educate, and plan the way forward. RSVP at www.mypeoplesassembly.comThe People’s Assembly on Race Equity & COVID-19 is being presented in partnership with:

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