'ByeCOVID' offers free, mobile coronavirus antibody testing to communities of color
ByeCOVID

The coronavirus pandemic has disproportionately impacted communities of color in the United States, adding insult to injury in the ongoing fight for racial equity in all areas. According to an NPR analysis of available data, the following are some disparities that have been found:

-Nationally, deaths from COVID-19 are nearly two times greater for Black Americans than would be expected based on share of population. In four states, the rate is three or more times greater than expected.

- In 42 states plus Washington D.C., Hispanic/Latino people make up a greater share of cases than expected for population share

- In 37 states plus Washington D.C. white deaths are lower than expected for population share



In response to these disparities, the city of Compton, California is partnering with Black-led organizations to respond to the testing and care needed in Black and Brown communities. ByeCOVID is an initiative founded by Originals Nation, a non-profit organization focusing on economic progress and wealth-building for Black America. It provides infrastructure to support innovation, as well as Trap heals, an artist/strategist collective utilizing community engagement, artistic activism and cultural leadership to honor and heal communities of color.

Together with the mayor of Compton, Aja Brown, these organizations are offering free, FDA-approved, rapid antibody testing to the community through byeCOVID.

In fact, today they are offering free antibody testing to all attendees of Compton College's Juneteenth celebration, with both walk-up and drive-thru options available.

The byeCOVID website describes the coronavirus initiative as, "a cultural response system that can deploy resources directly to underserved communities during this crisis."

Why is a "cultural response system" needed? Because we are in a healthcare crisis that relies on a healthcare system that already has a problem with disparate racial outcomes. The fact that the pandemic has followed suit points to certain needs not being met in communities of color.

"Providing underprivileged communities with free COVID-19 antibody testing delivered in a culturally sensitive manner is our chance to transform the narrative and uplift the people," the website states. "We won't stop with getting them access to the testing kits. We will also provide them with holistic care packages curated to promote positive well being that can sustain long-term healing."

A byeCOVID van can bring mobile testing into communities where testing is needed, and the care packages offered are "filled with essential items, personal protective equipment (PPE) and many soothing grooves to promote healthy coping mechanisms and best mental health practices."

Since the healthcare system doesn't generally recognize or attend to the cultural needs of communities of color, this initiative aims to help fill the gap, at least during the pandemic. "Racism is a public health crisis and we must come together to protect the most vulnerable among us," the byeCOVID site states. "During this global pandemic, which has prompted immense societal reflection, healing elements that remind us of self-care and communal togetherness need to become standard for the cultural spaces we create."

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Frito-Lay

Did you know one in five families are unable to provide everyday essentials and food for their children? This summer was also the hungriest on record with one in four children not knowing where their next meal will come from – an increase from one in seven children prior to the pandemic. The effects of COVID-19 continue to be felt around the country and many people struggle to secure basic needs. Unemployment is at an all-time high and an alarming number of families face food insecurity, not only from the increased financial burdens but also because many students and families rely on schools for school meal programs and other daily essentials.

This school year is unlike any other. Frito-Lay knew the critical need to ensure children have enough food and resources to succeed. The company quickly pivoted to expand its partnership with Feed the Children, a leading nonprofit focused on alleviating childhood hunger, to create the "Building the Future Together" program to provide shelf-stable food to supplement more than a quarter-million meals and distribute 500,000 pantry staples, school supplies, snacks, books, hand sanitizer, and personal care items to schools in underserved communities.

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Who would have thought that giving the world access to all human knowledge via the internet, the ability to follow and hear from experts on any subject via social media, and the ability to see what's happening anywhere in the world via smartphones with cameras would result in a terrifying percentage of the population believing and spouting nothing but falsehoods day in and day out?

Those of us who value facts, reason, and rational thought have found ourselves at some of our fellow citizens and thinking, "Really? THIS is how you choose to use the greatest tool humanity has ever created? To spew unfounded conspiracy theories?"

It's a marvel, truly.

Between Coronavirus/Bill Gates/5G conspiracies and QAnon/Evil Cabal/Pedophile conspiracies, I thought we were pretty much full up on kooky for 2020. But apparently not. The massive fires up and down the West Coast have ignited even more conspiracy theories, some of which local law enforcement and even the FBI have had to debunk.

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In 1945, the world had just endured the bloodiest war in history. World leaders were determined to not repeat the mistakes of the past. They wanted to build a better future, one free from the "scourge of war" so they signed the UN Charter — creating a global organization of nations that could deter and repel aggressors, mediate conflicts and broker armistices, and ensure collective progress.

Over the following 75 years, the UN played an essential role in preventing, mitigating or resolving conflicts all over the world. It faced new challenges and new threats — including the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, a Cold War and brutal civil wars, transnational terrorism and genocides. Today, the UN faces new tensions: shifting and more hostile geopolitics, digital weaponization, a global pandemic, and more.

This slideshow shows how the UN has worked to build peace and security around the world:

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Malians wait in line at a free clinic run by the UN Multidimensional Integrated Mission in Mali in 2014. Over their 75 year history, UN peacekeepers have deployed around the world in military and nonmilitary roles as they work towards human security and peace. Here's a look back at their history.

Photo credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

via Philanthropy Daily

On September 14, Charles "Chuck" Feeney signed the paperwork to shut down Atlantic Philanthropies. The ceremony was attended via Zoom by the philanthropies' board which included former California Governor Jerry Brown, Bill Gates, and Nancy Pelosi.

While most would think the shuttering of a philanthropic endeavor would be a sad event, it was just how Feeney planned. It marked the competition of four-decade mission to give away almost every penny of his $8 billion fortune.

Feeney has saved $2 million to live on for the remainder of his life.

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Katie Neeves (L) photo by Jayne Walsh, JK Rowling (R) photo by Sjhill, CC BY-SA 3.0

Dear JK Rowling,

I am writing this letter to say a big thank you to you. You may think it strange that a gobby trans woman such as me would wish to thank you after all your recent transphobic outpourings, but let me explain…

I certainly don't thank you for your lengthy essay last month where you describe the abuse you have suffered (for which you have my sympathy) and in which you stated that you do not hate trans people, while at the same time peddling even more anti-trans mis-information. Sadly, your diatribe directly caused some trans children to self-harm and other to attempt suicide.

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