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Oaxaca

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Elvia works as a medical interpreter in the Ventura County. Today, she is accompanying the occupational therapist Rachel Pile, who speaks only English. Every Monday, they work on 2-year-old Miguel’s therapy. His mother, Eulalia, only speaks and understands Mixteco.

Picture of Julio Vaqueiro Borbolla

An estimated 165,000 indigenous Mexican immigrants live and work in the fields of California. Some 80% of them do not speak English or Spanish. This cultural and language barrier makes it difficult to treat mental illnesses in the community.

Picture of Julio Vaqueiro Borbolla

In the fields in the Ventura County some of the workers speak Mixteco. Many of these indigenous farm workers, like Florino, are living in the country illegally. They typically don’t have access to health care. Most of them face poor living conditions and backbreaking daily labor in the fields.

Picture of Julio Vaqueiro Borbolla

There are around 120,000 indigenous Mexican migrants living in California. Most of them are farmworkers, face poor living conditions and higher than normal rates of illnesses. Many don't speak English or Spanish and are living in the country illegaly. They typically don’t have access to health care.

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Sandra McNeill has served as executive director of the Figueroa Corridor Community LandTrust since July 2007. Ms. McNeill returned to her home in the Figueroa Corridor in 2006 to work with the Land Trust after living in Oaxaca, Mexico. In 1995, she worked with other community activists to found Strategic Actions for a Just Economy (SAJE). Her years at SAJE included her role as the founding organizer of the Figueroa Corridor Coalition for Economic Justice.

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Dr. Bonnie Bade is a medical anthropologist whose work focuses on farm worker health, health care, California agriculture and farm labor, transnational migration, and ethnomedicine and ethnobotany among peoples of both indigenous Oaxaca and indigenous Southern California. Dr. Bade has worked with Mixtec communities in California, the San Diego/Tijuana border region, the San Joaquin Valley, and Oaxaca for over 15 years. Dr. Bade earned her Ph.D. in anthropology at the University of California, Riverside in 1994.

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The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors to serve as thought leaders in one of the most innovative and rewarding arenas in journalism today – “engaged reporting” that puts the community at the center of the reporting process. Learn more about the positions and apply to join our team. 

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