Michigan COVID-19 Community Response
We are community-based organizations across the state of Michigan. We come from big cities and small towns. Our members are Black, Brown, Indigenous, and White. We represent many of the most marginalized among us, including people with disabilities and compromised immune systems. We are committed to seeing our communities through the global pandemic of COVID-19, which we know will be difficult and scary. Together, we are reorienting our collective resources for the care and survival of our most vulnerable residents, seniors, and working people and families, as we weather this storm.
When our priorities are upside down, putting the interests of the most privileged ahead of the rest of us, we end up as we are now, in a situation where millions of workers can’t self-quarantine because they can’t miss a paycheck. Millions of kids depend on schools staying open so they can get two decent meals. Millions of immigrants (documented and undocumented) are too afraid to get treated for illnesses because they fear being caught up on in our hostile, punitive immigration system. Millions more can’t get treated for illnesses because they have no health insurance. Millions of incarcerated people are at high risk without the ability to self-quarantine, and already face inadequate access to proper health care.
There will be those who will try to seize such a crisis to further entrench their own interests and divide us against each other based on where we come from, what we have, or our perceived health and worthiness. They will try to harness panic to crack down on borders, scapegoat Asian Americans, grant huge tax breaks to corporations rather than investing in public health, and limit our rights to vote and dissent. They want us to operate from a place of fear and they will not keep us healthy.
But, our fates are tied. This virus is revealing to us the inter-connectedness of our world in a very personal way. It is showing, conclusively, that the health and well being of one is intimately bound to the health and well being of all. Only by working together will we defeat this outbreak.