COVID-19 outreach events reach hundreds of needy families Ethnic disparity in positive cases appears to drop

photo by Kate Sheehy/Semillas
Reyna Nolta from the Hispanic Resource Council at the COVID-19 prevention event in Orland on Saturday.

by Leslie Layton
A COVID-19 prevention campaign targeting low-income and minority communities in the region — that public health officials believe has been effective — is reaching hundreds of families as it winds down for this calendar year.

Spearheaded by the Hispanic Resource Council of Northern California, staffers from a host of social service agencies and Butte County Public Health have distributed more than 2,000 masks, more than 1,000 bottles of hand sanitizer, information packets and educational materials translated into Spanish at events throughout the North State. The latest events, held Oct. 17 in Orland, Chico and Oroville, were the last big projects in the 2020 prevention campaign although other facets of the campaign will continue. read more

Dismissing public health metrics, Gallagher says open up Reporter's Mlog: lawmaker's district torn over path forward

photo by Karen Laslo
Assemblyman James Gallagher, who represents most of Butte County and much of the Northern Sacramento Valley, preaches civil disobedience.

by Leslie Layton
analysis

Assemblyman James Gallagher (R-Yuba City) preached civil disobedience Thursday in front of the Chico Council Chambers, suggesting to unmasked constituents at an “Open Butte County” rally that opening up for business can be a necessary act of protest.

Speaking to almost 200 people, many of whom waved American flags or “Recall Newsom” signs, some sporting MAGA caps or Reopen T-shirts, the 3rd district assemblyman again said, as he has before, that shops and schools can consider reopening as acts of civil disobedience if they’re in violation of public health regulation. read more

Denial all over Speaking to the unmasked, addressing "possibility"

by Anna Blackmon Moore
guest contributor

My father, who died two years ago, was an alcoholic. When I was a child and he was inebriated, I’d ask him whether he was drunk. He always said no before stumbling off to bed. I watched him go and felt I had been wrong to suspect drunkenness and even more wrong to ask. read more

Hispanic Resource Council launches COVID outreach campaign COVID testing fear a problem

by Leslie Layton

Reyna Nolta and the Chico-based group she works with knew, shortly after Independence Day, that they had been called to act.

She had read and been interviewed for a July 4 ChicoSol story that reported on the disproportionate way in which COVID-19 was slamming the Latino community in Butte County. Now, the Hispanic Resource Council of Northern California (HRCNC) – an organization with a clunky name but a trustworthy reputation — has in a matter of weeks organized five events targeting Latino, Black and Hmong families with information and supplies to stem the spread of the virus. read more

War on immigrants escalates as pandemic worsens Trump steps up assault on immigration and immigrant communities

photo by Leslie Layton
Demonstrator at a Women’s March several years ago calling for immigrant rights.

by Sunita Sohrabji
EMS contributing editor

The Trump administration has made 400 policy changes detrimental to immigrants through its tenure at the White House, with 63 fresh blows meted out amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the Migration Policy Institute (MPI) in a report released July 31.

“Many of the changes reflect the administration’s really strong knowledge of immigration law and regulations, and their willingness to enforce things that have been on the books for years, but have never been implemented,” said Sarah Pierce, a policy analyst at MPI, who co-authored the report with MPI Associate Policy Analyst Jessica Bolter. read more

City of Chico says it will enforce mask-wearing Council tries new approach to public participation at meetings

photo by Karen Laslo
Because of the pandemic, city employees sat outside during the meeting, in the 90-degree heat, handing out speaker cards to those who wished to speak at the City Council meeting.

Public participation was allowed at the Aug.4 City Council meeting — but a citizen speaker tore off his mask at the microphone as he addressed the panel.

The Council allowed in-person public participation at the meeting for the first time since the pandemic set in, asking would-be speakers to wear a face covering in the chambers and line up outside, staying 6 feet apart, until their names were called. They were allowed to then enter one-by-one. One man pulled off his mask as he addressed the Council, pleading with it not to enforce mandatory mask compliance. read more