CACHE COUNTY (ABC4 News) – Utah’s Hispanic community has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, accounting for 38% of cases even though they make-up just 14% of Utah’s population.
Now, a non-profit is offering COVID-19 testing to Latino people in northern Utah, but as ABC4’s Jordan Verdadeiro discovered, the agency has had to make some tough decisions to get help to those who need it most.
Centro De La Familia in Providence tested people on Friday and they’re working to help Latinos in the community get more access to information about COVID-19.
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Byanka Cruz is a family service specialist for Centro de la Familia in Providence. She says the Latino community here has seen constant growth.
“We are a migrant/seasonal head start, we have a lot workers that work on the farms,” said Cruz.
Cruz says she noticed a trend within the Latino community, of some being afraid to go to the doctors or government-run agencies because of their immigration status.
“Our agency teamed up with the Utah Health Department, so we got them free COVID testing,”
Cruz says they tested 133 people in the Latino community just this past Friday and they’re helping to educate the community about the pandemic.
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“We understand that there’s some parents that depend on this and our care and our resources that we give them,” said Cruz.
Cruz says the non-profit had to delay their opening because of the pandemic, which has presented other challenged as well.
“We did a lot of services remotely, since we weren’t able to do it in person,” said Cruz.
“And we’re only allowed to have a certain amount of children,” she added.
That’s why Cruz says the agency is prioritizing Latino families who work in agriculture and low-income families before others, during the pandemic.
“We had a point criteria, and the most points the children have, those are the ones that we’re serving first,” said Cruz.
Cruz says they could use clothing donations and other supplies, especially during this time.
For more information on Centro de la Familia, go to CDLF.org.