COVID-19 disproportionately affects women of color

'It's been really hard,' says Eboni Taylor with Mothering Justice

DETROIT – It’s not a secret that COVID-19 has really swept across the city of Detroit and new numbers are now showing it impacts one particular group harder than others.

Aug. 6, 2020: Michigan coronavirus (COVID-19) cases up to 85,429; Death toll now at 6,247

“I was at work, and I was feeling sick and more so cough, cold, kind of Flu or whatever and I think I was off the next couple of day,” said Cara Fields.

Cara Fields is one of the thousands of people here in Michigan who caught the coronavirus. She said her experience started in late March.

“I was coughing and I couldn’t breathe. I had a temperature of up to 103,” Fields said. “And I was just coughing, coughing, coughing, couldn’t talk.”

She described the pain on a scale of 10, “It’s most definitely a 10,” said Fields.

“Two thirds of Michigan’s women of color have been affected by COVID,” said Jenalyn Sotto with National Women’s Law Center.

Those are the hard numbers said Jenalyn Sotto with National Women’s Law Center. The center, along with Mothering Justice in Detroit, just released a survey, confirming what many already knew. About 600 women participated in an online survey from May 20-June 4, 2020.

Of those who took the survey, 67% were African American. 33% either Hispanic, Asian American, Middle Eastern or North African. The results show among women of color in Michigan, two thirds have been affected financially or personally by the virus.

“It’s been really hard for our family. It’s been really hard,” said Eboni Taylor with Mothering Justice.

Eboni Taylor with Mothering Justice lost a loved one, “I had a very close, family member, my dear aunt, Regina Johnson passed from COVID, pretty early on in the pandemic. This poll has also showed us, what we always known, at Motherly Justice, what we always known at the Law Center, and that is issues like affordable quality child care, education paid sick time, We’ve had all seen this come to a head during this pandemic. We could have survived, something like this, had these policies been in place prior to the pandemic.”

About the Author: