A place to see good, share good, and do good.

Refresh Not-LiftedLIFT 2 Lifted

FollowUn-Follow this World Spotlight  

Show on your Nest:



Flag as Spam or Fraud

The Buzz

This World Spotlight was created on Apr 29, 2020 @ 07:18:42 pm

See all Buzz

StandPart with Maranie to connect and show activity on your Nest

Show on your Nest when Maranie:








What's this?The list of who you connected to, and who connected with you, is normally public. This can help you and others find like minded or interesting people to connect with. But if necessary you can hide this connection, and it will not be visible to anyone, not even the person you are connecting to.

 

Comments

No Comments yet

Login or create an account and you can comment too!

Stand & Unite

Your Nest   Refresh

Login or create an account and you can create your own personal Nest!

Browse Light on the World Spotlights

Rights (In)dispensable: Who is essential in America?

maranierae.jpg

(In)dispensable: Who is essential in America?

Last week I set out from Syracuse to delve into the question:

‘In light of the coronavirus pandemic, who is considered “essential” in America?’

mar1.jpg

Cristena, 35 // Raleigh, NC "I've been working here for about 4 years and make $8.25/hr. It's pretty good work. Simple, easy and I do think it's essential. People still need a place to rest their heads and I get to be the person to help them get that.”
“I’d say the nicest thing I’ve seen so far is a pastor came in last week and paid for a full week for a young lady. She started crying and just had a big smile on her face. He comes every week to pray for the people and just help out however he can. She is a single mom and is really struggling. They cut her hours when all of this happened and wasn’t able to pay for both food and to live here. What some people don't understand is that some people live here for weeks and sometimes longer because they have nowhere else to go.”

_______________________________________

It is my eighth day on the road and I am writing to you from a small town in rural Georgia. I began this trip with a seemingly simple question, but the interactions and conversations I’ve had have spurred others about inequality, marginalization, immigration, racism, politics and power.
In many ways, it is a privilege to stay home. In the some 1680 miles driven so far I've seen firsthand that those often least appreciated and respected and those working the longest hours for the lowest wages are now the stitching that holds our nation together.
A friend and mentor recently asked what I was doing in lieu of being physically near those I photograph. As someone who likes to get close to people and their experiences this question highlighted one of the challenges of working as a photojournalist during the coronavirus pandemic.

How can you establish intimacy from a distance?

Is approaching people with an honest desire to learn, a readiness to spend time and a willingness to really listen enough? Can words bridge a physical divide and lend us a hand into individual lives?
To me, this effort is as much an ethnographic study as it is a visual project. I think of Dorothea Lange who used images and words together, not just to record, but also to discover and explore ideas.
Consider these portraits and captions my field notes, the beginning of something that is still taking shape. The faces are of those who I’ve had the privilege to spend time with and the captions their words.
This is an initial dispatch from an ongoing inquiry; I've about two weeks left on the road and would value your thoughts and, should you be an essential worker and want to connect, please reach out.

Onward.

_______________________________________

mar2.jpg

I met Karina, 25, from El Salvador and Yanira, 46, from Guatemala in Washington D.C. Both women live in Maryland and come into D.C. everyday to clean houses for a contract company. "Today, we work at 6 in the morning and go home at 7 or 8 at night. They pay us $9 dollars per hour."

The minimum wage in Washington D.C. is $14

mar3.jpg

Kenny, 52 // Truckstop in Hartford, NY

"I’ve been driving trucks for about 18 years now. Y’know, I don’t love it, but it’s good work. It pays the bills. Driving for Walmart is the worst. After that is Amazon. We can’t park on their properties...they put boots on our trucks. Years ago Walmart would be okay for overnight parking, but now they don’t respect us. I’ve even seen people get booted in these times.
I live in the Poconos area with my wife and five daughters. I didn’t like it at first; I’m from Harlem and missed the city, but this [the coronavirus] taught me a lesson. I don’t want to be in close proximity with anybody. Especially in New York, nobody can be 6 feet away in the city. I appreciate living in a rural area now.
With the virus, I am afraid being out here, but I have my girls and a wife to take care of. I don’t have the option to stay home and not work because they say I’m essential. It’s tough, but I feel like I'm at least doing something to help people.”

mar4.jpg

Latonya, 37 // Baltimore, MD "I've been working here at Dollar General for about seven months now. I only make minimum-wage, but it's better than no job. I do believe this work is essential because we sell a lot of things that people need to survive: food, clothes, household supplies ... diapers. I am afraid that I might get sick, but even if I could stay home I don't want to. It's important to be here."

mar5.jpg

mar6.jpg

mar8.jpg

mar9.jpg

_______________________________________

mar11.jpg

Kristofer, 34 // New York City "I’m psyched to go to work; I like what I do. I'm a substance abuse counselor at a methadone clinic in the city.
I deal with people in bad situations. What I see is the lack of preparedness, the failure of the systems and the structures that exist and the obvious proof that it’s not working and we’re just not prepared.
People who can manage life on life’s terms are losing their shit and we are here to help folks who tend to make decisions harmful to their well- being during normal times.
Yes, I absolutely believe this job is essential—if we weren't out here, people would be dying, our clients would be dying."

mar12.jpg

Brenda Jordan, 54 I met Brenda on I-95 South in North Carolina; we were both first responders to a multiple-vehicle accident. After medics arrived we stood on the side of the road and talked. "I’ve been an LPN 21 years and work at the VA in Fayetteville. The biggest change is we're not dealing with folks face to face anymore, but they have access to us by phone and secure messaging." When I asked her why she stopped at the accident she smiled and said, “It’s what I do. It’s embedded in nurses." After a pause Brenda added, "But recently with all of the shootings happening around the country they are training us to do the opposite...to run when there is a commotion. That's against our nature. The worst is just the fear on peoples' faces."

_______________________________________

mar13.jpg

mar14.jpg

mar15.jpg

mar17.jpg

_____________________________________

mar18.jpg

Dwight, 52 // Dunn, NC "I've been here for 13 years. It's just me—I handle everything. Anything broke, I fix it. Toilets clogged, I take care of that. I sweep the parking lot and paint and really anything that needs shined up, I shine it."
"I went to school but left before the ninth grade. I ended up working here because I was living in another hotel for two years after I broke up with my wife. The owner asked if I wanted to move to this hotel, live in it and keep the place up. I've been here ever since. I make about $300 a week. It's a set rate. Six days a week, 24 hours a day. I live here— me and my girlfriend stay in one of the rooms and she works at Burger King."
"Am I afraid? Yes. You see, I have a chronic lung disease. I was hospitalized just this last October. They said I've got blood clots on my lungs. But I have to work. It's just in me. I need the money, sure, but what else would I do all day?"
"What would tell folks? Be safe. And be good to people. Times are hard."

_______________________________________

I've recently turned this newsletter into a bi-monthly publication and created an option for folks to subscribe for a few dollars a month.

Interested in supporting independent journalism and storytelling?

You can do so Here

My gratitude to all those who have already signed up.

Copyright © 2020 Maranie R. Staab, All rights reserved.

Follow my ongoing work on Instagram:

Instagram

Reach me directly at maranie.rae@gmail.com

Accounts
Manage Account Privacy Policy Terms of Use Join Sales Team
Contact
Feedback Report a Problem Contact Us About Us
One World Blue Network
Initiatives Light on the World Planet Sanctuary Light of Culture Stand & Unite List Initiatives List World Spotlights List Planet Spotlights List Culture Spotlights
Universality
Universal Human Rights Peace in the World Social Network for
Social Change
           

© 2014-2020 One World Blue, LLC ®