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REAL TALK – Latinx Immigrant Communities and the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Spartanburg County Foundation in partnership with Mary Black Foundation, Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, and Alianza Spartanburg Announces Virtual Forum

Systemic issues, including those that shape employment, housing and access to care, profoundly shape the way Latinx residents experience the pandemic.

The REAL TALK – Latinx Immigrant Communities and the COVID-19 Pandemic virtual forum brought together experts in diverse fields to discuss both realities for Latinx residents during COVID-19 and the systemic work that can be shaped now for greater physical health and well-being in the future for Latinx residents of our county.

View this recorded virtual session below!

“Previous REAL TALK sessions have centered around COVID-19 and its impact on the black community,” said Mary L. Thomas, Chief Operating Officer with The Spartanburg County Foundation. “The data is showing us that Latinx families are also disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.”

Latinx families are particularly impacted by the COVID-19 crisis due to job loss, lack of information in Spanish and insufficient access to healthcare. Many Latinos are essential workers in agricultural occupations on farms, in service industries such as restaurants and hotels, and in manufacturing plants such as meat-packing facilities which have been hit hardest during the pandemic. According to a Pew Research Center survey conducted in March of 2020, across the U.S., 49% of Latinos said they had to take a pay cut or lost a job – or both – because of COVID-19. That compared to 33% of all U.S. adults. Also, according to the Pew Research Center, Hispanic unemployment rate in May is likely to have been 20.4%.

In S.C., immigrant households paid $2.1 billion in local, state and federal taxes in 2018. Undocumented households paid $160.2 million in taxes. Nevertheless, many of these households have been left out of the federal COVID-19 financial packages. If any adult member of a household does not have a Social Security number, then no one in that home is eligible for a $1,200 stimulus check under the federal CARES Act – even if the other members of the households are U.S. citizens.

This virtual forum is in partnership with the Mary Black Foundation whose mission is to invest in people and communities for improved health, wellness and success in Spartanburg County.

“We are pleased to participate in this opportunity for the community to better understand the health inequities and systemic barriers facing our Latinx residents. The Mary Black Foundation is committed to advancing health equity so that all people have access to opportunities to thrive and achieve health and wellness,” said Molly Talbot-Metz, President & CEO of the Mary Black Foundation.