Things That Matter

Black And Latino Neighborhoods Are The Most Affected Communities By Covid-19

The novel coronavirus known as Covid-19 is still spreading in the U.S. and claiming lives. New York is the epicenter of the outbreak in the U.S. and the U.S. is the country with the most infections and deaths. At the time that this post was written, more than 1,583,000 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in the U.S. and more than 95,000 people have died. This means that about 1 in every 3 people infected with Covid-19 lives in the U.S.

Covid-19 is devastating the U.S. with more than 1.5 million people testing positive for the deadly virus.

The U.S. is the epicenter of the Covid-19 pandemic with more deaths and infections than any other in the country by far. The second closest country in terms of infections is Russia with more than 326,000 infections. A new study found that had the U.S. taken safety measures one week earlier, 36,000 lives could have been saved.

Black and Latino communities have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez represents one of the hardest-hit districts in the U.S. Her district is a majority Black and Latino district in New York has seen a devastating wave of Covid-19 infections and death. Economic inequalities have exacerbated the issues of Covid-19 and it is clear that it is having a deadly consequence.

Part of the problem is the kind of work and living conditions in these communities.

Latino and Black neighborhoods in New York are seeing infections and death rates disproportionate to the population within the state. As states begin to reopen, many Latinos are further put at risk. According to the LA Times, a large percentage of essential workers are people of color meaning that they have been putting themselves at risk during the pandemic. Now, more at being told to go to work while the virus continues to spread in the U.S.

According to data from New York, the rate of death for Latinos is 259.2 out of 100,000. This is second to Black residents experiencing 265 deaths per 100,000. For reference, whites in New York are experiencing a death rate of 160 per 100,000.

The trend of Latino communities facing a significant wave of Covid-19 is reflected across the country. According to The New York Times, Latinos in Iowa make up 20 percent of Covid-19 infections while only representing 6 percent of the population and in Washington state Latinos are 13 percent of the population but 31 percent of Covid-19 cases.

In late March, AOC called out President Trump’s lack of a response as setting the country up for thousands of preventable deaths.

A scientific study examined the Covid-19 response in the U.S. and how it could have gone differently. According to the study, had the Trump administration led and implemented social distancing measures one week sooner, 36,000 lives could have been spared.

READ: A Rail Worker Died Of The Coronavirus After A Man Who Said He Had COVID-19 Spat On Her

The Music Industry Has Stepped Up As The Pandemic’s Most Generous Donor

Entertainment

The Music Industry Has Stepped Up As The Pandemic’s Most Generous Donor

The music industry has been among the most affected by COVID-19, but, as businessman Stephen Brooks says, it has responded with great “generosity.”

Even though the growth in revenue in the music industry doesn’t compare with that of audiovisual productions or video games, it has been the industry that has demonstrated the most altruism during the global COVID-19 crisis.

“Everyone from the artists to the businesses have been hit hard by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Stephen Brooks, creator of the online music channel Latido Music, told Efe.

Nonetheless, he affirms that “they have demonstrated such generosity that brings honor to our art. I’ve never been more proud to belong to the global music family.”

This pride is due to the response of artists towards the crisis, as they were among the first entertainment figures to support the creation of funds to help the working class, provide concerts on social media, and give donations to help fight the pandemic.

Ricky Martin was among the first to come forward and, through his Instagram, has insisted to his followers the importance of staying home and donating to foundations that are helping to fight the virus.

The virtual concert phenomenon began with Juanes and Alejandro Sanz, whose approach was then followed by Panamanian artist Sech and Jorge Drexler, from Uruguay, who hoped to bring their music to the homes of their fans. Eventually, businesses both small and large and TV channels followed their lead.

Anglo-Saxon artists have also started their own initiatives. Rihanna announced that she had donated five million dollars through her Clara Lionel Foundation, “for food banks in high-risk communities and elderly citizens in the US, as well as the purchase of tests and materials to help the sick in Haiti and Malawi.”

Streaming platforms have also opened up their wallets, donating to funds destined to help workers in the industry who, for the most part, worked for them. Spotify donated 10 million dollars and launched an initiative that would match the donations from their listeners.

The data collected from reports run by companies like Nielsen and Billboard indicate that the growth in music has remained stable in comparison to other sectors of the entertainment business, which have been struggling. “Some have even declined. There are indicators that point to a slight user decline in music platforms and on Youtube.” 

Even then, the spirit of musicians doesn’t let up and every day they keep announcing new events on social media and organizations in need of support to help fight the pandemic. 

Click here to learn more about the music industry’s generosity during the pandemic. 

Working From Home Can Impact Your Mental Health, Here’s How To Stay Sane And Healthy

Things That Matter

Working From Home Can Impact Your Mental Health, Here’s How To Stay Sane And Healthy

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A recent survey shows that thirty-five percent of workers who telecommute said their mental health had deteriorated as a result of doing so amid the coronavirus lockdown. As someone who has gone from working in a social, fun-filled, compassionate office space, I can consider myself part of that 35%.

Although working from home (for those privileged enough to do so) is a necessity for our safety and that of the community – it definitely presents some unique challenges.

Yes, the benefits are many: avoiding transit problems and the stress of commuting; sidestepping office politics; adopting a flexible schedule that allows for chores and errands to be incorporated into the work day; more time with family and pets; and a break on keeping up a business wardrobe and other appearance-related expenses.

But there’s a dark side. It’s an arrangement that fosters isolation and disconnection, two conditions that feed the greedy depression monster.

Here are some excellent tips for taking care of your mental health during these unprecedented times.

Break up your workday

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Some common challenges when working from home during the pandemic is the lack of stimulation and connection to people you used to see regularly. This can become a bit confusing, so it’s great to try to break up the schedule.

One of the best tips for working from home that I’ve discovered is breaking up the work day with movement. This can be a quick burst of movement (like jumping jacks, or lifting kettle bells) or some lower impact movement like a walk. I’m also a huge fan of taking a mid-afternoon break (longer than your typical 30-minute lunch break) to go on a long walk or run errands.

Get a routine and stick to it

Routine is essential, and it’s even more important when structure is missing.

Sticking to a routine does not mean that you have to abide by the old standard 9-5 office hours, and only take downtime in the evening. It simply means that you have a system for waking up on time, getting ready, feeling confident and getting your work done in a timely manner. 

When you do this regularly enough, it will feel more natural over time, and you won’t have to think about it so much. For me, this has meant taking my dogs out on a walk to get a coffee in the morning and then coming home and getting to work – it’s like creating my own little commute.

Stay connected

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Remember to keep up with friends and family, even if that can only be done through a Zoom or FaceTime call. Text someone you care about, and when restrictions are lifted in your area, try to make plans as regularly as you feel comfortable.

Connection is key, and it can be challenging when you don’t leave your home for long stretches of time.

It’s also helpful to join platforms of people doing similar work as you and interacting with them throughout the day. Or you can join an online book club or participate in volunteer work – having this sort of obligation will go a long way in helping you show up when you don’t feel great.

Incorporate wellness activities into your day

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One of the biggest perks of working from home is that you get to do things you might not be able to if you’re in an office all day.

I’ve been doing 20 minute walks around my neighborhood while listening to music. This moves the energy in the body and allow us to to have a shift in consciousness, which is so important when you’ve been isolated in front of a computer screen.

Another way to experience new energy in the body is to pause from work, find a comfortable place to sit, and then do deep belly breaths. This involves taking one deep breath in, and then focus on the exhale. You’ll notice your shoulders will relax, and your body will feel lighter.

Learn how to detach

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It’s so important when working from home that you keep your work and personal lives and actual physical areas totally separate. For many, it may not be possible to create an actual separate office space but you can create workspaces outside of your most “lived in” spaces. That’s what matters most.

There is a risk that working hours will get longer if the boundaries between work and personal life become blurred. It is necessary to establish a rigid system in which work can be carried out in a planned manner, such as by setting working hours and the timing of contact with supervisors.

No matter what you do, remember that working from home is yet another “new normal” to get used to — and the sooner you adapt to what makes you most productive, healthy, and mentally well, the better.