Hello dear readers,
Between the end of the school year, travel plans, weddings, and Covid cases popping up in the midst of it all, I feel safe saying there’s just a lot right now. My best wishes to you and whatever is going on in your life.
No other notes from me except that I really appreciated meeting some 285 South readers in person this past weekend, and hope there will be more opportunities in the future to meet more of you in real life.
Okay, let’s get started.
It’s primary voting day. Voters across Georgia will be deciding who they want on their ballots in November when voters will elect everyone from local lawmakers to the governor. Not sure where to vote? Find your polling location here. And if you have any other questions - like who the candidates are or what to bring when you show up at the polls - check out this guide (which is also available in Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Korean) from Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta.
Interrupting Ossoff. Speaking of elected officials, activists with the Shut Down Folkston ICE Facility campaign interrupted a Democratic fundraising gala in Gwinnett County when Senator Ossoff was speaking this past weekend. Organizer Nat Villasana demanded a stop to the expansion of the immigrant detention facility in Folkston, Georgia and an end to Title 42, a public health order enacted at the beginning of the pandemic to keep people from crossing the Southern border. Democrats have been both divided about the policy and under heat from immigrant rights advocates to end it.
Baby formula shortage: how this AJC story is leading to real world impact. It seems absurd given the nationwide formula shortage, but unopened and unexpired cans of baby formula have been routinely thrown out by the state of Georgia, as part of a long standing public health measure. The AJC’s Lautaro Grinspan found out about it through Vanesa Sarazua, who works with low-income immigrant families through her nonprofit, the Hispanic Alliance Georgia.
After the story was published, the Georgia Department of Health said it would no longer throw out the formula, though the state hasn’t provided details on how the new policy would work. Lautaro told me that Vanesa “is very excited that the policy has now been changed and hopes that her nonprofit, the Hispanic Alliance Georgia, will be able to receive some of the donated WIC formula, given the level of need that exists in her community.” Read the full story here.
Widowhood in the South Asian community: A long feature read for the week - In “Flying Solo: Reinventing Widowhood” journalist Lavina Melwani speaks to women in Atlanta who describe the ways losing their spouses changed their lives and the nontraditional ways they found hope and healing. Read the full story in Khabar Magazine.
And finally, bringing hiking to diverse communities. I connected with Dr. Kim Rodriguez, founder of Latinas Running, about her love of hiking and how she’s getting people of diverse backgrounds to venture into the outdoors. “Hiking is not as common in the Latinx Community, but it is slowly growing… in a lot of these green spaces and parks, BIPOC people have experienced feelings of uncertainty or worry when traveling through routes where there is not much diversity…this is why having communities that welcome all and who are doing the work of getting people outside and diversifying the outdoors is important.” Read the full story in 285 South here.
***Latinas Running is actually host a run/walk at Murphy Candler Park this Saturday, May 28th, dedicated to supporting mothers. The group is asking for those joining to bring formula and other baby items to donate to the Norcross-based nonprofit Helping Mamas (More info here).***
That’s all from me!
I’ll see you here at the end of the week.