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Immigrants and advocates throughout the U.S. say abuse, inhumane conditions and the government’s and private prisons’ slow responses to the pandemic has made Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainees hesitant about receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. David John has been a detainee at the Buffalo Federal Detention Center for two years, where he contracted COVID-19 twice. Earlier this year, it was reported that the center had a 63 percent positive COVID-19 rate. John said jail officials didn’t follow precautions to avoid the spread of the virus. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was recently made available for detainees, but John said they’re worried about the vaccine’s safety and “the way that it’s being administered is not trustworthy.” Truthout
In other local immigration news…
Documented Talks: The Future of Chinatown
📍 Documented Event
Manhattan’s Chinatown has suffered immensely since the beginning of the pandemic; from businesses closing to former President Donald Trump constantly blaming coronavirus on China. On Thursday, April 29 at 4:30 pm, Documented host an online discussion with Rong Xiaoqing, a reporter for the Chinese-language newspaper Sing Tao Daily, to discuss the events of this past year and will shed light upon what the future may hold for Chinatown residents as they cope with loss of employment, declining business and rising rent, along with other issues. Wellington Chen, executive director of the Chinatown BID, Joanne Kwog, president of Pearl River Mart and Yin Kong, founder of Think! Chinatown, will join her. Register here for our free Zoom event.
SoHo Artwork Represents Undocumented Immigrants Who Died During Pandemic
New York artist Paola Mendoza created new artwork that recognizes undocumented immigrants who lost their lives to COVID-19. The pictures and stories follow seven people who came to the U.S. and worked hard for their families, including some essential workers. Mendoza said, “Specifically I wanted to mourn the community that has been foundational to the survival of the U.S. of this pandemic, and has been sidelined, in many places disregarded and disparaged,” Mendoza described. Alexander Aguilar’s father Guadalupe was once of the people in the project. Aguilar said Guadalupe wanted the American dream for his family and left a legacy of working hard, kindness and perseverance. ABC7 NY
NJ Family Spends Another Birthday Without Missing Girl
Dulce Maria Alavez turned 7 on Sunday, marking another birthday her New Jersey family had to spend without her. She was last seen on Sept. 16, 2019 during a family outing in Cumberland County. The FBI told PIX11 on the one-year anniversary that the investigation was ongoing and asked anyone who was near Bridgeton City Park around the time of the disappearance to speak up. In 2019, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said he was afraid a fear of immigration enforcement was holding the community back from helping, especially since the area where Alavez disappeared has a large immigrant population. PIX11