Sunday, May 20, 2007

scant news, ample rumors

Sent: Saturday, May 19, 2007 10:42 AM
Subject: scant news, ample rumors

I used to be a visiting nurse for the local Public Health Department. That means I went to see patients at their homes. Since I live in "bike distance" of one of the community clinics, I still have a part-time job, replacing two full time clinic nurses who are too far away to get to work anymore. The only patients we see are those who can come in by foot, bike, or bus, so a lot of clinic hours got cut. Our department has a meager gas ration, but because I have a Prius, I'm still allowed the rare home visit to a high risk patients. A bodyguard comes with me for visits in the red zones-one of our former outreach workers who happens to be ex-military. No money/no gas for outreach workers anymore, so he's the only one we have left. We make visits after the clinic closes at noon.

The clinic site in the latino neighborhood is closed; the neighborhood is almost vacant. Work for the undocumented folks dried up in the first few weeks. Nobody came by for the day laborers who stood on the corners, there was no demand for construction work, or "landscape maintenance". Then all the fast food and carwash places disappeared, and no jobs cleaning houses, either. One woman who made it to the clinic from across town (three transfers) with her sick baby said her sister found a live-in job in a gated community in exchange for shelter in a modified garden shed, and slim ration of food.

They couldn't afford to go back to their home countries, of course, but one of the local churches managed to get a block of bus tickets to San Diego so women, children and elderly could get as far as the border.

It is rumored that drivers without Mexican citizenship, (or lots of cash) are no longer allowed to cross unless they carry proof of having close family in Mexico who will be "responsible" for them.
Netizen intwoworlds

1 comment:

YuckyMuck said...

intwoworlds -really good to hear from you, I haven't been getting any news from the SD area at all. I used to work down there and I worry about the folks there. Is the rush to get out as big as I have heard? Do you hear anything about how Mexico is coping with the reverse flow and people not being able to send money down? Keep is un the loop, and take care of yourself.