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'They don't believe in the virus' | Stanislaus County Latino community upping coronavirus education

A recent surge in Latino Covid-19 cases has occurred in Stanislaus County

STOCKTON, Calif. — A wife and mother of two, Dina Brambila is all about protection from the coronavirus.

"Not just for our health... but also, if we protect ourselves, we are protecting everyone else," said Brambila.

However, as manager of a community resource center in Modesto, she sometimes sees a lack of COVID-19 concern.

"They don't believe in the virus. I hear stories. 'This is a conspiracy.' I hear stories you know [that] this is just a made up virus," Brambila said.

Of the 991 cases of coronavirus in Stanislaus County, 66% or two out of every three are Latino.

Yamilet Valladolid, a Modesto area community networker, created a Facebook page in Spanish called "Espanol Informes de Coronavirus Stanislaus/Merced/San Joaquin" with information about the virus.

"How to talk to children about COVID[-19]. We also added resources as far as being able to look up information [and] local information as far as numbers,"  Valladolid said.

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Valladolid believes the spike in Latino cases are because of three factors, labor, finances, and culture. 

Many latinos are essential workers, either working in agriculture, construction or manufacturing and also working in close quarters.

For the financial factor, she says many lations are large families, multi-generational, and living under the same household. 

She believes culture also plays a role.

"A lot of Latino's are very used to shaking hands, hugs, kisses and some people feel that it's rude if somebody wants to shake your hand [and] you say 'No, I'm not shaking hands,'" Valladolid said.

Dina Brambila says that, for the Latino community to know the virus is real, those who test positive for it need to talk about it.

Testing in Stanislaus County is available in Patterson, West Modesto, and Salida. For San Joaquin County, a list of testing sites is available HERE

Testing is also available in Sacramento at the Consulate General of Mexico via Elica's Mobile Clinic. It will be available through the month of June from Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., regardless of immigration status or health insurance. 

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WATCH ALSO: San Joaquin County sees first major spike in coronavirus cases since early April