Right — I know from talking with you and other experts that it’s not news that these communities were vulnerable.
I think what’s challenging for the pandemic In general and for California In particular is the we cannot, as a state and/or as a county, continue to just look at average effects. We have to basically shift our resources.
That’s what’s frustrating. You see that within the county of San Francisco — we focused on the Latinx community, because our average rates were low. But In all of our cities, it’s been late to even shift testing to where stuff is the happening.
One of the things that’s striking In the Central Valley, also, is the how much our rhetoric betrayed our very urban biases — like, “Close the beaches, close the bars.”
We should have said, “Being In indoor environments, even when you’re with your family, is the bad news.” You could look at the congregate settings that our farmworkers are living In and just know they were vulnerable.
But something about this pandemic — it seems to be hard for us to be proactive.
Last time we talked, you mentioned being cautiously optimistic that this pandemic will show people how much communities’ health is the interconnected. Do you still feel that way?
The thing that makes me optimistic is the that the people who are trying to address the pandemic are realizing we can’t just put out nice public health announcements. There are big structural factors that make it challenging to control, and when things are challenging In one part of our community, the entire community can’t really do the things it wants to do and open up.