Black people are dying from coronavirus — air pollution is one of the main culprits

During the turmoil of the coronavirus pandemic, we’re hearing often from our leaders that “we’re all in this together.” While true, some of us are in it more than others; black Americans are dying at a faster rate from the novel coronavirus than other groups. There are many reasons for this disparity, but a big one that’s getting too little notice is one of the many systemic failures endangering black Americans: their exposure to air pollution.

Harvard researchers recently found that even the smallest increase of exposure to a common air pollutant is associated with a 15 percent increase in the death rate from COVID-19 (on top of increased risk of lung cancer and heart problems). Fossil fuel plants are among the top emitters of this particle, along with other pollutants that can cause or worsen asthma and shortness of breath. Partly due to a history of redlining, African Americans live closer to fossil fuel infrastructure than the rest of the population: A 2017 joint report from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Clean Air Task Force found that more than a million African Americans live within a half-mile of an oil and gas facility.

— source | Jared DeWese | 05/24/20

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Why Racism, Not Race, Is a Risk Factor for Dying of COVID-19

COVID-19 has cut a jarring and unequal path across the U.S. The disease has disproportionately harmed and killed people of color. Compared with non-Hispanic white people, American Indian, Black and Latinx individuals, respectively, faced 3.5, 2.8 and 3.0 times the risk of being hospitalized for the infection and 2.4, 1.9 and 2.3 times the chance of dying, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The reason for these disparities is not biological but is the result of the deep-rooted and pervasive impacts of racism, says epidemiologist and family physician Camara Phyllis Jones. Racism, she explains, has led people of color to be more exposed and less protected from the virus and has burdened them with chronic diseases. For 14 years Jones worked at the CDC as a medical officer and director of research on health inequities. As president of the American Public Health Association in 2016, she led a campaign to explicitly name racism as a direct threat to public health. She is currently a Presidential Visiting Fellow at the Yale School of Medicine and is writing a book proposing strategies for a national campaign against racism.

As the country began to confront the unequal impact of COVID and the ongoing legacy of racial injustice it represents, Jones spoke with Scientific American contributing editor

— source | Claudia Wallis | Jun 12, 2020

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Six workers died at Amazon gulag

At least six people died after part of an Amazon warehouse collapsed in Edwardsville when a tornado rolled through Friday night, Edwardsville Fire Department said Saturday. The death toll rose to six Saturday afternoon, announced in a press conference at the Edwardsville Public Safety Building. Forty-five other people made it out safely from the warehouse, Edwardsville Fire Chief James Whiteford said Saturday. 150 yards of the Amazon building collapsed, Whiteford said Saturday. The walls on both sides of the building collapsed inward, causing the roof to fall. The 11-inch-thick, 40-feet-tall walls could not sustain the tornado that hit the building Friday night. The National Weather Service

Amazon workers are not part of a union, but Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union President Stuart Appelbaum released a statement blasting Amazon for what he said was putting people’s lives in danger.

“Time and time again Amazon puts its bottom line above the lives of its employees,” Appelbaum said in the statement. “Requiring workers to work through such a major tornado warning event as this was inexcusable.

“Amazon cannot continue to be let off the hook for putting hard working people’s lives at risk. Our union will not back down until Amazon is held accountable for these and so many more dangerous labor practices.”

— source | Dec 17, 2021

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Femicide Census in UK

Fatal violence against women across the world is increasing. A November 2020 report from the UK-based nonprofit Femicide Census spanning nearly a decade found that, on average, “a woman was killed by a male partner or ex-partner every four days,” with that number increasing to every three days when the focus is expanded to include killings outside romantic relationships. Due to a lack of accumulated data, the Femicide Census reports that these killings are typically treated as isolated incidents by law enforcement and legislators despite being “identified globally as a leading cause of premature death for women.”

According to the Femicide Census, 62 percent of the 1,425 women killed by men from 2009 to 2018 in the United Kingdom were killed at the hands of a current or former intimate partner, and the remaining 38 percent were either killed by a family member, a friend, or someone they had just met. Of the 888 women killed by intimate partners, 38 percent were killed within the first month of separating from their partner, 89 percent within the first year of separating or attempting to separate, and 5 percent were killed three or more

— source | Nov 9, 2021

[as far as women are treated like a consumable thing in movies, channels, and social media this issue will increase. so solution is boycott them as well as women celebrities (they are wrong role models).]

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Lightning strikes killed 2,862 Indians in 2020

Lightning strikes killed 2,862 Indians in 2020, Jitendra Singh, minister of state (independent charge) in the Union Ministry of Science and Technology and Earth Sciences, told the Lok Sabha December 1, 2021. Singh added that lightning activity had shown an increasing trend over India in the past two decades according to recent studies. The North East, eastern and parts of peninsular India had registered a sharp increase of lighting over the past two decades. Central India recorded a minimal increase in lightning strikes. It was moderate over the rest of the country.

— source | 01 Dec 2021

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Death Data Shows Protest Not of Big Farmers

Newsclick reached out to Lakhwinder Singh, Professor Emeritus, Department of Economics, Khalsa College, Patiala, to discuss the study he and Shergill undertook. Singh explains what their data suggest, the emergence of inter-class alliances in rural India, and why the protest movement has become a battle for their very survival.

In the joint study you and Baldev Singh Shergill undertook, “Separating Wheat from the Chaff: Farm Laws, Farmers’ Protest and Outcomes”, there is a rich vein of data on farmers who died during the ongoing protest movement. How did you all collect the data?

We have been following farmers’ protest ever since they began to amass on the outskirts of New Delhi on 26 November 2020. After a month or so, we read media reports on the death of some protestors. From these reports, we gathered the names of the deceased and the villages to which they belonged. We secured their telephone numbers, talked to their families, and gathered details such as their age and the size of their landholdings.

— source | 17 Nov 2021

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US drug overdose deaths surged to 100,000

More than 100,000 people died of drug overdoses in the United States during the 12-month period ending April 2021, according to new provisional data published Wednesday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This staggering number, a dismal record for human misery, coincides roughly with the first year of the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19 killed about 509,000 people during that same timeframe, from May 2020 to April 2021. The drug overdose death toll jumped 29.5 percent from the same period a year earlier and has nearly doubled over the past five years. Synthetic opioids, mainly fentanyl, caused 64 percent of these overdose deaths, up nearly 50 percent from the year before, according to the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics.

— source | 17 Nov 2021

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1,000+ Environmental Defenders Killed Since Paris Accord — 1 in 3 Indigenous

Activists held a memorial in Glasgow for those unable to attend this year’s U.N. climate summit: 1,005 land and environmental defenders who have been murdered since the 2015 Paris Agreement. One in three of those defenders killed was an Indigenous person. This comes as 2020 was the most dangerous year on record for environmental and land defenders. We speak with Andrea Ixchíu, a Maya K’iche’ leader, journalist and human rights defender based in Guatemala. Ixchíu says that the Guatemalan government, influenced by transnational corporate interests, has launched an assault on Indigenous land defenders: “They [Indigenous leaders] are not allowed to be in their communities defending their land and their territory because of the militizariation.” Speaking on COP26, Ixchíu says, “We do not just want to be observers,” and “If you want to create more solutions to the climate crisis, it’s really important to give land back to Indigenous communities.”

I would like to start honoring the existence, the lives of these people that are taking care of forests, land, water, air, that are facing the effects of the climate crisis but also facing the violence that in countries like Guatemala is imposed by the Guatemalan government, by the extractive industries, that are not just causing the climate crisis but also perpetrating colonialist behavior in our territories and in our lands.

I am here also to say that there has been a lot of Indigenous people that has been put into prison, that is not allowed to be in their communities defending their land and their territory because of the militarization.

— source | Nov 08, 2021

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UAW member hit, killed by car near John Deere picket line

A vehicle struck and killed a United Auto Workers member Wednesday as he was walking to a picket line to join striking workers outside a John Deere distribution plant in northwest Illinois, the union and police said. The man, identified as 56-year-old Richard Rich, was struck at about 6 a.m. CDT at an intersection near a road that leads to the John Deere Parts Distribution Center in Milan, Illinois, Police Chief Shawn Johnson said. More than 10,000 Deere & Co. workers went on strike this month at 14 Deere factories in Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Colorado and Georgia.

— source | Oct 28, 2021

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Up to 180,000 health care workers have died from COVID-19

In the latest in a series of statistics showing the disastrous social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Organization (WHO) has reported that as many as 180,000 health care workers have died from the ongoing pandemic worldwide. “Between 80,000 to 180,000 health and care workers could have died from Covid-19 in the period between January 2020 to May 2021,” the WHO stated. These workers are among the approximately 15 million people worldwide who have died from the pandemic, according to “excess death” statistics published by the Economist. Health care workers, who have been battling the pandemic for close to two years, are approaching exhaustion.

— source | 22 Oct 2021

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