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Rep. Ruiz moderates panel on COVID-19’s impact on the Latin community


It’s your vote 2020. This weekend Representative Raul Ruiz was the moderator for a national panel on the topic of COVID-19’s impact on the Latin community.

The panel featured Jill Biden, former second lady and wife of the democratic presidential presumptive nominee, Joe Biden.

“This pandemic has been devastating and that’s especially true of black and brown communities,” Jill Biden said opening up the panel.

Former second lady Jill Biden was among six others in a panel moderated by Dr. Raul Ruiz on Saturday.

Dr. Ruiz shared his expertise on COVID-19 virtually from Palm Desert. Each panelist spoke about the struggles of working families, frontline workers and small businesses in local Latin communities.

“Latinos are at higher risk of getting infected with COVID, coronavirus, due to being essential workers in locations that do not have the resources and do not allow the proper precautions to take place,” Dr. Ruiz said in the virtual panel.

Dr. Ruiz also said Latin communities lack resources like target testing, tracing, and quarantining locations to keep them safe.

Another panelist, Dr. Robert Rodriguez, a professor of emergency medicine at the University of California San Fransisco school of medicine shared his thoughts.

“What I believe needs to happen is we need to set up COVID rapid response teams,” Dr. Rodriguez said during the panel.

Amirah Sequeira with National Nurses Unite was also on the panel.

“We need to increase testing availability and we need to do so that’s free and easily accessible," Sequeira said.

This panel was a part of a larger virtual conference held by the League of Latin American Citizens.

About 1,500 people attended this virtual conference from all over the United States.

We reached out to Congressman Raul's opponent republican Erin Cruz for her thoughts on the topic of COVID-19’s impact on the Latin community. She gave us a statement that reads:

"COVID-19 impact on the community at large has been vast due to people being unable to get timely general and emergency care, unrelated to COVID-19. In March of this year, Dr. Ruiz helped open a military run field hospital for general patient care in the valley, which has seen zero patients and is scheduled to remain open through 2021. To date, this seems to be a complete waste of resources. Individuals in our communities have suffered from job loss, financial stresses from small business closures, and lack of basic services, and now as a result, the suicide rate is up. Schools, businesses, and churches being shuttered due to COVID-19 are among top concerns I hear, from not only the Latino Community, but from all communities. I estimate all communities would have appreciated Dr. Ruiz remain in D.C. under State of Emergency terms to resolve unemployment payment agreements, opening up the American economy, our schools, our churches, and making an effort to get America back on track. I’m concerned Dr. Ruiz is prioritizing his medical practice and career by participating in medical field activities, this includes sitting on medical panels on T.V. rather than addressing the State of Emergency as a Congressman in D.C., representing our community needs as urgently as we need them addressed. This is what many elected him to do, turn up the heat and get things done for our communities. Ruiz has failed our communities. We deserve better," Erin Cruz said.

For the entire panel discussion visit:

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Caitlin Thropay

Caitlin Thropay is the Weekend Morning Anchor and Lifestyle Reporter for KESQ News Channel 3, The Desert’s News Leader. Learn more about Caitlin here.


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