During this pandemic many states in the US are under lockdown with the exception of essential workers. At this time we have seen construction workers still on site, this appears to be common place. Migrants need to work especially at this time as most are working paycheck to paycheck. The building companies turn a blind eye adopting a ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ policy with reference to legal and illegal migrant staff.
Although these images are of apartment construction here in Houston, building of all types around the US is still ongoing. The latest problem area being a new sports venue for the Raiders, the Allegiant stadium in Las Vegas, where staff have contracted the virus. There have been no protocols regarding distancing and the wearing of protective masks up until the last few days.
It may be worth adding that during the time of this pandemic construction workers are not the only migrants being put directly in harms way. Meatpacking giants such as Tyson are being forced back to work by executive orders from the President of the US. It has been said that they are being given a death sentence. These workers are over 90% Latino, already there have been over 70 deaths due to the virus, but without any testing available the number of infections is unknown.
‘New Raiders Stadium Records 7 Cases of COVID-19 on Construction Site’. 2020. [online]. Available at: https://sports.yahoo.com/new-raiders-stadium-records-7-cases-of-covid-19-on-construction-site-212410772.html [accessed 29 Apr 2020].
TALLET, Olivia P. 2020. ‘Why Houston Immigrants Feel “like They Suddenly Don’t Exist” Due to Coronavirus’. HoustonChronicle.com [online]. Available at: https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/job-loss-coronavirus-aid-pandemic-covid-immigrants-15182005.php [accessed 29 Apr 2020].
TALLET, Olivia P. 2020. ‘Coronavirus Pandemic Leaves Houston Immigrants with “Confusion and Worries”’. HoustonChronicle.com [online]. Available at: https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/immigrants-coronavirus-pandemic-local-health-15135783.php [accessed 29 Apr 2020].
CULLEN, Art. 2020. ‘Why Is Trump Insisting That Meat-Packing Plants Stay Open despite Risks? | Art Cullen’. The Guardian, 1 May [online]. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/may/01/trump-meat-processing-executive-order-workers [accessed 1 May 2020].