Latino communities across the U.S. have been heavily impacted by Covid-19. According to the Pew Research Center, about half of Latinos say they or someone close to them faced health or financial hardships during the pandemic. The economic and health impacts faced by Latinos are also disproportionately higher than the general U.S. population.
As striking as these statistics are, what they don’t show are the specific challenges and changes happening in Latino communities. We asked a group of journalists who work in both Spanish and English to explore the idea: What we gained and what we lost in Covid.
The audio stories in this podcast came out of a workshop that Feet in 2 Worlds hosted earlier this year for bilingual journalists. Participants attended from around the country and Latin America. The stories focus on a casino worker in New Hampshire, a chef in Mexico, a radio host in Kansas, and high school students in Arizona.
These four audio vignettes were produced in a mixture of English and Spanish, a reflection of how the two languages live side-by-side in communities—and many households—across the U.S.
Bilingual journalists play an important role in serving Latino communities. They’re more able to understand the nuances and cultural contexts of these communities, while also providing a crucial source of accessible and culturally appropriate information.
Transcripts in English and Spanish are available at the A Better Life? website.
Our featured producers are:
Gabriela Lozada is a Report for America corps member with New Hampshire Public Radio. Her focus is on the Latinx community with original reporting done in Spanish for ¿Qué hay de Nuevo NH?. She has over 10 years of reporting experience and is an award-winning documentary filmmaker who specializes in covering social issues. Her films include El último hielero del Chimborazo (The Last Iceman of Chimborazo) and La Marea.
Andrea Arzaba is an independent journalist who has dedicated her career to documenting the stories of people in Latin America and Latinx communities in the United States. She works in both English and Spanish.
Bennito L. Kelty is a journalist with TucsonSentinel.com in Arizona and a Report for America Corps member. He’s written for print and digital since 2017, and he reports in English and Spanish. His stories have been published in newspapers across the country. Bennito is Mexican-American and grew up in Aurora, CO.
Claudia Amaro is the founder of Planeta Venus Online, a Spanish language media platform in Wichita, Kansas that connects the Latino community to local information and resources. She also owns AB&C Bilingual Resources, a bilingual marketing company.
Support for the bilingual journalism workshop came from the Arizona Latino Media Association, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the Society of Professional Journalists.
A Better Life? and Feet in 2 Worlds are supported by The Ford Foundation, the John D. and Katherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the David and Katherine Moore Family Foundation, the Ralph E. Ogden Foundation, an anonymous donor, and readers like you.