Although the toll of the coronavirus has been most acute in urban areas, the virus has been spreading in rural America. The reasons behind the uptick are numerous, from lack of medical providers, hospitals and personal protective equipment, to limited broadband and large proportions of uninsured and poorly protected farm and factory workers.
“They’re called essential workers but they’re not treated as essential human beings,” says Sandra Oxford of the Hudson Valley Labor Federation, who appears in this show. Is being rural a pre-existing vulnerability in this crisis? Equipped with a facemask and a selfie stick, Laura Flanders reports (from a responsible distance) on the impact of Covid-19 on one poor, rural county just 100 miles from New York City.
She talks to poultry workers, dairy workers, artists, activists and labor organizers about what the pandemic has revealed about their county from its economic fragility, to the strength of local social networks. What fears do people have facing a future of more budget cuts and what sort of investment is most needed now?
This is an episode that speaks to rural and small-town life that is rarely visible in our media, even when, as here, the community in question is just 100 miles from a global media capital. This episode was co-produced by Sabrina Artel, host of Trailer Talk aired on a community radio station, WJFF in Jeffersonville, Sullivan County, New York.
The Laura Flanders Show leads the field in new economy media, reporting on the social critics, artists, activists, and entrepreneurs who are building tomorrow’s world today. While mainstream media looks for ways the world is falling apart, The LF Show brings us stories that will piece it back together — better.
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