Iglesias-Rios discusses dangers of COVID-19 outbreaks among Michigan farm workers
"In one Michigan county, almost half the COVID-19 cases are tied to farm outbreaks" - Detroit Free Press. 9/22/2020.
PSC Postdoctoral Scholar Lisbeth Iglesias-Rios and colleague Alexis Handal spoke about extra risk migrant farm workers face in a Detroit Free Press article. Migrant workers have historically encountered a lack of labor protections and they might not speak up about their health and safety because they're afraid of losing their jobs, according to the researchers.
"There's some really important power dynamics at play here, and workers are not empowered to really have control of their working and living conditions," said Handal, an associate professor of epidemiology.
And "the fear of deportation is huge" for those who are undocumented, said Iglesias-Rios. That can mean staying quiet about problems such as a lack of masks and other personal protective equipment.
"Having a silent workforce is dangerous during the pandemic," Iglesias-Rios said.