Photographers Celebrate Hispanic Workers in Georgia
A new photo and video project celebrates Hispanic workers in Georgia who had to continue working during the pandemic, even when a lockdown allowed many other workers to stay at home.
Photographers Hector Amador and Miguel Martinez document the experiences of these essential workers in the online exhibit “Our Essential Heroes,” the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Monday. The project, which includes interviews with a farm worker and a janitor, is part of the Latino Community Fund Celebrations of Hispanic Heritage Month in Georgia.
“We realized a lot of people were sort of invisible when it comes to essential work,” Amador told AJC. “Miguel and I are both immigrants. We know what it’s like to be trapped between two cultures. We know what it’s like to be treated like a second-class citizen sometimes.”
Maria Fajardo, a Glennville farm worker who contracted the coronavirus, said in an interview featured on the project that the work of harvesting crops is not valued and farm workers are not valued.
“We have to be here,” she said. “We could be sick, but we still have to keep working, collecting food so people can eat.”
Marcelo Silva, who operates a professional cleaning service, said in another interview for the project that many workers like him whose jobs were considered essential have not received the same help in staying safe.
“When the pandemic started, doctors, nurses and other first responders were given the resources they needed to be protected, but we (essential workers) had to be more careful because they ignored us. at the time, ”he says. .
Amador and Martinez said spending months listening to the stories of essential workers was a cathartic experience that made them think of times in their lives when they felt forgotten and invisible.
“I like giving a voice to these people because I’ve been there, we’ve been there, we know what their struggles are, we understand their world,” said Amador, 49. “We understand their fears, their insecurities, and we just want to let them know that we see you, and we want everyone to see you.”
To view the project, visit unidosgeorgia.com/heroes.