The Hispanic farmworker is also a hero of the coronavirus pandemic.
We are deep enough into the COVID-19 pandemic to witness firsthand what the negligence of the administration of President Donald Trump has wrought and how profoundly and disproportionately it is affecting the Hispanic community in the United States, especially those who work in the fields.
Every day new data trickles out of cities and states that make it increasingly clear the virus’s unequal toll on minorities. In New York City alone, Covid-19 is killing Latino people at 1.6 times the rate that it is killing white people.
There are more than 3 million farmworkers in the nation, with 73% of them immigrants. The latter put the food on our table, many are children who work in poverty and substandard conditions – even before the pandemic.
Hispanics are resilient, and more so as we fight the coronavirus. We come together, rely on one another, and put shoulder to the wheel to ensure the survival of our communities.
That is why Cinco de Mayo will be different this year.
It will be marked by Altísimo Live! and featuring celebrities like Rosario Dawson, Anitta, Banda Recodo, Becky G, Carlos Vives, CNCO, Edward James Olmos, Fonseca, Farruko, Gente de Zona, Gloria, and Emilio Estefan, Jesse & Joy, Juanes, and Lila Downs to help raise f $3 million to help agricultural workers through the Farmworkers Pandemic Relief Fund.
Inspired by the historic ’80s fundraiser known as Live Aid , Mexican-American actress Eva Longoria has enlisted Latino celebrities to raise funds to alleviate the economic crisisexperienced by millions of immigrant workers across the country. The event title Altisimo (which means the highest one can go) is meant to lift up the farmworkers through the event.
Throughout the show, farmworker leaders and farmworker voices will be heard via video diaries and testimonials from around the country. Luis Fonsi, Maluma, Nicky Jam, Sech, Stephanie Sigman, Steve Aoki, and Wisin and Yandel, among many others, will also be on hand.
“Altísimo Live! represents a watershed but desperately needed moment of inspiring total unity for the Latinx community that we believe will support farmworkers’ contributions and leave a lasting legacy for Latinos to build on,” Altísimo Live! co-founder Manny Ruiz, CEO of RetroPop Media and founder of Hispanicize, said in a statement announcing the event.
“Farmworkers are deemed an essential workforce during this health crisis, yet they have consistently been denied essential rights and benefits historically and in the midst of this devastating virus,” said Mónica Ramírez, founder of Justice for Migrant Women and co-founder of The Latinx House.
After the government approved an economic stimulus package that left out undocumented immigrants, Dreamers, and diverse families, Hispanics across the country all of a sudden became “ essential workers,” but with little if any guarantee of receiving the help they need.
“From Puerto Rico to the strawberry fields of California, Altísimo Live! is helping all America recognize that farmworkers are also heroes of the pandemic while raising funds to meet some of their urgent needs.”
The virtual concert will stream live and free on Facebook Live, YouTube, Twitter, Periscope, and Twitch, among other social media platforms, on May 5 at 10 a.m. PT, with an interactive Livestream.