“The greatest risk we face now is to be complacent … We cannot rest until we have reached all unvaccinated and under-vaccinated Latinos in our state,” said Morales in a press statement about the policy brief.
Health disparities that lead to a higher risk of hospitalization and death for Latino people, in comparison to white people, will likely continue, even as boosters and new shots for children ages 5 to 11 become available across the state.
Silvia Giannattasio-Lugo remembers when the young girls would come into the office she works at to participate in leadership programs. She loved to see how they genuinely connected with each other. She especially loved open-mic nights, when young girls came together to celebrate with each other.
“I didn’t get to see a lot of that growing up,” she says. “It was lonely for me growing up not always having a community there to celebrate with me.”
Today, Giannattasio-Lugo is the director of development and communication at Young Women Empowered (Y-WE), a nonprofit based in Beacon Hill. Y-WE connects young women with leadership and skills programs, such as their community garden or summer camps. She’s a pillar in the organization’s fundraising operations, where she helps sustain relationships between sponsors and Y-WE.
“It’s hard for anyone to understand policy or big words and everything that’s being thrown at you, so I liked communications because it bridged that, it made things accessible,” she says in an interview with the Emerald.
The festivities began last Friday at the Seattle Asian Art Museum with an opening night gala and after party reception. Dennis Mencia, a Honduran American actor known for playing Mateo Villanueva on CW’s Jane the Virgin, was MC for the event. The gala showcased the Uruguayan comedy, The Broken Glass Theory, one of the festival’s 106 in-person and online films supporting the magic of filmmaking as part of Hispanic culture globally.
The in-person showcase continued at The Beacon Cinema in Columbia City on Saturday with an American film called Coast, directed by Jessica Hester and Derek Schweickart. Also shown was the Venezuelan film, Opposite Direction, and an LGBTQ film called Liz In September. The director, Fina Torres, known for Fox Searchlight’s Woman on Top with Penélope Cruz, was present for the Q&A after the screening.
Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 marks Hispanic Heritage Month in the U.S. To celebrate, the Emerald spoke to Latino community members in Seattle about highlighting Latino businesses, what it means to be Latino in the U.S., and a little about their own journeys. Some of the words they used to describe Latino people were “hardworking,” “passionate,” and “go-getters.”
Intentionalist is built on one simple idea: where we spend our money matters. We make it easy to find, learn about, and support small businesses and the diverse people behind them through everyday decisions about where we eat, drink, and shop. #SpendLikeItMatters
Latino Heritage Month is underway, and we are celebrating the best way we know how: by visiting small businesses owned by members of the diverse Latino and Hispanic communities throughout Seattle.
Wondering why Latino Heritage Month begins in the middle of the month? Sept. 15 marks the anniversary of independence for Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Additionally, Mexican Independence Day is Sept. 16 and Independence Day in Chile is Sept. 18.
Check out these three eateries — Cuban, Mexican, and Salvadoran — to start off your Latino Heritage Month celebration and be sure to visit Intentionalist’s Latinx Heritage Month landing page to check out a variety of fun promotions that include prizes from Seattle Sounders FC and Seattle Seahawks.
The South Park Multicultural Latino Market, a recurring weekend pop-up hosted by the South Park Merchants Association (SPMA), will host a special celebration of Mexican Independence Day and Hispanic American Heritage Month on Saturday, Sept. 18, at the South Park Plaza. Fiestas Patrias will feature DJs spinning salsa, cumbia, merengue, banda, and quebradita sonidero music, and vendors will sell authentic Mexican and Latino foods like tacos, empanadas, elotes, specialty non-alcoholic drinks, as well as clothing, jewelry, and collectibles. The celebration starts at 1 p.m. and goes until 5 p.m. or later. RSVP and find out more at the Fiesta Patrias Facebook event page.
Mexican Independence Day took place on Sept. 16, but other Central and South American countries celebrate their independence days around the same time, kicking off Hispanic American Heritage Month from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. Fiestas Patrias is an inclusive Independence Day celebration for South Park’s diverse Latino community and everyone is welcome.
Latino communities remain at higher risk of COVID-19 infection because of lagging vaccination rates, according to a new policy brief released by the University of Washington’s Latino Center for Health (LCH). The new numbers show that only 35% of Latinos are fully vaccinated in the state, with 6% partially vaccinated.
“With the growing threat of the COVID-19 Delta variant in our region, it is imperative that we vaccinate as many Latinos as possible before the fall when schools reopen and cooler temperatures will drive infection rates higher,” said physician Leo Morales, the co-director of LCH and author of the policy brief, in a press release. Another brief LCH released a few months ago suggests that a lack of access to the vaccine as well as vaccine hesitancy are some of the biggest factors affecting Latino communities. Although a majority of those surveyed had positive views on the vaccine, many expressed concerns around side effects and safety, cost, and effectiveness.
Within the first six days of a hunger strike outside of Casa Latina, one participant was hospitalized twice. Firm in her stance that Casa Latina had not done enough for the workers who had levied sexual assault allegations against another employee, the hunger striker refused food, even in the hospital.
For over a week, a handful of protestors camped outside of Casa Latina — an organization dedicated to promoting employment and education in the Latino community — vowing not to leave and not to eat until their demands were met. On Sunday, June 13, with stomachs empty from a tense nine days that shut down the day worker center due to alleged intimidation from the protestors, the strikers and Casa Latina’s leadership came to an agreement.
“I’ve started eating again slowly,” said Ana Torres, who nearly threw up when she broke her fast with a banana after the meeting with Casa Latina that Sunday. “Too much pain in the stomach. Nothing good.”
The coronavirus pandemic has exposed racial health disparities, specifically impacting African American and Latino communities. Coronavirus hit at disproportionate rates for communities of color. On May 9, 2021 the rate of cases for COVID-19, for instance, in white communities was 2,754 per 100,000, while Latino communities had a rate of 9,992 per 100,000 people. In King County, 62% of white communities are vaccinated while only 46% of the Latino population have been vaccinated. Latino Americans are four times more likely to be hospitalized from COVID-19 than their white counterparts. Though jarring, this is not surprising.