Latinos

Madi Bolanos / KVPR

On a warm Saturday morning in south Fresno County, families and vendors bargain at the Cherry Auction, the Central Valley’s largest outdoor market. Latino residents have come here for decades to browse endless rows of vendors in search of clothing, blankets, produce and much more.

A song -- ‘Carta Jugada’ by Banda Tuzantla -- blares from 27-year-old Alejandro Gonzalez’s CD stand. Gonzalez and his family have sold CD’s at the swap meet since he was 8 years old. 

“It officially became mine when I was 15,” he says. “My dad passed away and I took over the stand.”  

 

Pedro Cruz Mendoza was born in Oaxaca and came to the Central Valley in 1988. His wife and their son joined him 8 years later. He spent 21 years working in the fields.

“He was very hard working,”  said Claudia Medina, Cruz Mendoza’s wife. “He never missed a day of work - never.” 

Early on in the pandemic, the state of California put an emphasis on equity in its pandemic response, requiring specific levels of testing and outreach in disadvantaged census tracts in order for counties to advance through the state’s reopening blueprint.

Now, obstacles to vaccine access have introduced the potential for new disparities, and newly published state data shows what many have feared: that the vaccine isn’t being distributed equitably among racial and ethnic groups.

Whitney Pirtle, Tania Pacheco-Werner and Chet Hewitt

Earlier this week, the New York Times published an analysis of national data that found that Black and Latinx Americans are three times as likely to catch COVID-19 compared to whites. To discuss the implications of those findings, and what it means for the battle against the virus here in the San Joaquin Valley, Valley Edition Host Kathleen Schock spoke with Whitney Pirtle, assistant professor of sociology at UC Merced, Dr.

Futuro Media Group

As the host of the popular NPR show Latino USA and founder of the non-profit Futuro Media Group, Maria Hinojosa shines a light on the experience of the Latinx community in America. And with the release of her memoir in September, Hinojosa will soon be sharing some more personal stories with her fans. FM 89's Kathleen Schock spoke with Hinojosa about her book and the challenges of reporting during a pandemic.

Monica Velez

A new exhibit at Arte Américas in downtown Fresno shows the history of Latinos in the San Joaquin Valley through pictures, paintings, maps, and stories. The exhibit, Caminos: Latino History of the Central Valley, covers the 1700s to present day. 

For two years, a multitude of people have been working to put together this exhibit. Dr. Alex Sarargoza was the lead researcher on this project and Nancy Marquez was the director. 

Kerry Klein/KVPR

If you look at the nutrition label on a loaf of bread, you may come across folic acid or folate. It’s a vitamin that, in pregnant women, has been shown to reduce debilitating and sometimes fatal birth defects. For decades, folic acid has been added to some foods, but not others. Now, a new FDA decision to expand those foods could bring the vitamin to more people in the San Joaquin Valley.

A new report demonstrates the need for more Latino doctors in California. 

Nine percent. That’s the proportion of Latino students in California med schools, even though Latinos make up almost 40 percent of the state’s population. The percentage of doctors that are Latino is even lower – around five percent. The report, written by the advocacy group Latino Physicians of California, says that an overwhelming majority of Latino doctors supports promoting health careers for Latino youths and attracting more Latino physicians to the state.

Diana Aguilera / Valley Public Radio

Hmong farmers from all over the country met in Fresno today to discuss current challenges, seek services and share farming tips. Valley Public Radio’s Diana Aguilera reports how the group is now reaching other minority communities hoping to transcend cultural boundaries.

Hmong American farmers have held this type of conference for the last five years. It’s a place where small farmers can find the support and services they’re looking for. But now, it’s reaching farmers beyond the Hmong community. They’re joining forces with Latinos.

Chukou Thao spearheaded the movement.

Latino Leaders Call For District Based Elections

Apr 23, 2015
Creative Commons licensed from Flickr user Glenngould / http://www.flickr.com/photos/for_tea_too/1957375742/

Latinos make up 40 percent of California’s population, but just about 15 percent of the state’s mayors and city council members. A bill backed by the state’s legislative Latino caucus is seeking to make city governments more representative. Katie Orr reports from Sacramento.

The bill would require some cities with populations of more than 100,000 to hold district-based municipal elections, instead of at-large elections. 

Diana Aguilera / Valley Public Radio

With the second open enrollment period of Covered California in full swing, state officials are boosting their efforts to reach out to Latinos. Yet, there are many people in the Central Valley who are living in the shadows when it comes to enrolling for health care.

Covered California officials say they're proud to have signed up 1.2 million people for health insurance during the first year. But Executive Director Peter Lee says there’s still some things they want to improve.

Study: More California Latinos Attend College, Few Finish

Nov 5, 2013
Lance Johnson / Licensed under Creative Commons from Flickr user LanceJohnson http://www.flickr.com/photos/lancejohnson/5703722259/

College is a goal for the majority of Latinos graduating from California high schools. But as Katie Orr reports, a new report out today shows few Latinos actually finish college.

The study from the organization The Campaign for College Opportunities finds seven out of ten California Latino high school graduates enrolled in college last year. But just 11 percent of Latino adults in the state have a bachelors or graduate degree.