Discover more from 285 South
Title 42 ending, language diversity in Georgia, and experimenting with Bangladeshi flavors.
Pandemic-era immigration restrictions to end on May 11th: Title 42, a federal public health measure that was cited during the pandemic to justify the immediate deportation of people who crossed the border, is set to expire on May 11th. Federal officials, along with Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, are expecting a surge in migration. Read more here.
Santiago Marquez, the CEO of the Latin American Association (LAA) - a Buford Highway based nonprofit, told me the organization supported around 700 Venezuelan families last year who crossed the border and arrived in Atlanta. He said the LAA is standing by and ready to help. “We have no idea what to expect. We’re preparing based on what we saw last year - preparing for an influx of folks who are coming here with nothing, who might be homeless, and might need help right away.”
But, said Marquez, the LAA, doesn’t have the funding it did last year to support those families - and is actively working with partners to find it.
GA House Democrats speak out against gun violence: Following two mass shootings in Georgia in the last week, and the deadly mass shooting in Texas over the weekend, Georgia House Democrats are holding a press conference this morning to “consider legislation to address the epidemic of gun violence in Georgia.” Details here.
Among those killed was Amy St. Pierre, a CDC employee and Atlanta resident who worked and volunteered with the immigration support organization New American Pathways. “Although Amy was only with the organization for a short time, she made an enormous impact on our clients and our team. After leaving New AP to work with the CDC, she continued to volunteer with us and was a champion for refugees in Georgia,” said the organization in a recent post.
Latino residents disproportionately impacted in GA worker deaths: Between 2019 and 2022, 30 percent of workplace deaths were Hispanic workers, according to an AJC investigation. Among them, 15-year old Oscar Junior Lorenso Ortiz, who was crushed by a forklift. An important and heart wrenching piece by Lautaro Grinspan: read it here.
New report: languages spoken in Georgia: 14 percent of Georgia residents speak a language other than English at home - and speakers of diverse language not only live in the metro area, but in rural parts of Georgia as well, like Webster County. Other findings: Eight percent of all Georgians speak Spanish, and the top three languages spoken are Vietnamese, Chinese, and Korean. Check out the full report from Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Atlanta here.
Latino Family Festival at Stone Mountain Park: The park, which is also home to the world’s largest Confederate monument, is hosting its first ever Latino Family Festival this month on the weekends through May 21st. The lineup of events includes Colombian ballet, flamenco dancers, a Panamanian marching band and more. The inaugural festival comes amidst a recent announcement that $11 million in funding would go towards the creation of a museum to “tell the truth” about the park’s racist history. Read more here and here.
Buford Highway histories: Los Vecinos de Buford Highway connects hundreds of Latino residents living along Buford Highway with each other, with resources, and with information. In my latest for the Atlanta History Center, I wrote about the origins of Vecinos - which go back to a classroom in Cross Keys High School in 2015. Read it here.
And finally, “Bangladeshi bruschetta”: I spoke to Chef Samina Sattar, known on Instagram as “The Feeding Therapist,” about what inspires her delightfully surprising Bangladeshi fusion recipes (among them, “Bangladeshi bruschetta,” doodh patti glazed chai cookies, and more). Stay tuned for that piece on 285 South later this week!
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