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农场工人冒着冠状病毒感染的风险以维持美国的食品供应正常

  "If we’re essential,we need help,because we’re the people feeding the country,”says Eugenia Gonzales.

  “如果我们是必要的,那么我们就需要帮助,因为我们是养活国家的人,”Eugenia Gonzales说。

  While millions of Americans shelter in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19,farmworkers on California’s cool central coast move from row to row,carefully picking fat strawberries and packing them into boxes to ship country-wide.

  当数以百万计的美国人在适当的地方避难以防止covid19的传播时,加利福尼亚中央海岸的农场工人们从一排到另一排,小心翼翼地采摘肥草莓并把它们装进箱子运往全国各地。

  Farmworkers have been labeled essential workers during the COVID-19 pandemic,critical to keeping the U.S.’s food supplies flowing.But they are worried.Their communities are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of the disease,and for many of them,information and protection from the disease has not been forthcoming.

  在19日爆发的流行性感冒期间,农场工人被贴上了“必要工人”的标签,这对保证美国的粮食供应至关重要。但是他们很担心。他们的社区特别容易受到这种疾病的影响,对他们中的许多人来说,还没有得到关于这种疾病的信息和保护。

  So far,there are no reports of infected farmworkers.But the entire supply chain for fresh produce could be endangered if the virus sweeps through rural agricultural communities with as much force as it has elsewhere.

  到目前为止,还没有感染农场工人的报告。但是,如果病毒像在其他地方一样横扫农村农业社区,那么整个新鲜农产品供应链可能会受到威胁。

  Many farmworkers are poor,with little or no access to health care.Many suffer from respiratory diseases that make them more susceptible to COVID-19,the illness caused by the coronavirus.Many live in crowded households and commute to work together,providing them with little opportunity for social distancing.All of these things make them targets for illness.

  许多农场工人很穷,很少或根本得不到医疗保健。许多人患有呼吸道疾病,这使他们更容易感染冠状病毒引起的COVID-19。许多人住在拥挤的家里,一起通勤上班,这让他们几乎没有机会与人保持社交距离。所有这些都使他们成为疾病的目标。

  “Many are afraid to go to work,but also afraid not to,”says Juvenal Solano,a farmworker advocate in Oxnard,California.

  加州奥克斯纳德农场工人权益倡导者Juvenal Solano说,“许多人害怕去工作,但也害怕不去。”

  Communicating the risk

  沟通风险


  There’s no word for“virus”in Mixtec,the indigenous Mexican language spoken by many of the thousands of farmworkers currently picking strawberries in California’s Ventura and Oxnard Counties.

  目前在加州文图拉县和奥克斯纳德县采摘草莓的数千名农场工人中,有许多人说的是墨西哥土著语言米斯特克语,这里没有病毒一词。

  When the coronavirus started to take hold in nearby cities,Genevieve Flores-Haro and her colleagues at MICOP,a nonprofit that supports indigenous farmworkers along California’s central coast,scrambled to communicate the virus’risks to their community.“There’s a sickness going around with these symptoms,”they explained in over 20 different dialects of indigenous languages like Mixtec and Zapotec,which they broadcast over and over again on their local radio station and social media channels.

  当这种冠状病毒开始在附近城市肆虐时,Genevieve Flores-Haro和她在MICOP的同事们急忙向他们的社区传达这种病毒的风险。MICOP是一家非营利组织,为加州中部海岸的土著农民提供支持。他们用超过20种不同的方言解释这些症状,比如米斯特克语和萨帕特克语,他们在当地电台和社交媒体频道上一遍又一遍地播放这些方言。

  “There’s a storm coming for us,and we’re worried,”says Flores-Haro.

  “暴风雨就要来了,我们很担心,”Flores-Haro说。

  There is enough food in the U.S.—but fresh produce is at risk

  美国有足够的食物,但新鲜农产品面临风险

  (Read about how coronavirus is impacting food insecurity on a local scale).

  (请阅读关于冠状病毒如何影响当地粮食不安全的报道)。

  For weeks,grocery store shelves have been unusually bare,stripped of flour,yeast,milk,beans,and more—staple foods many rely on.“This temporary supply chain disruption has been like nothing we’ve ever seen,”says Dawn Thilmany,an agricultural economist at Colorado State University.

  几个星期以来,杂货店的货架上罕见地空空如也,没有面粉、酵母、牛奶、豆类和更多许多人依赖的主食。科罗拉多州立大学的农业经济学家Dawn Thilmany说,“这种暂时的供应链中断是我们从未见过的。”

  So far,those shortages have developed because of the unprecedented demand on the system instigated by the sweeping stay-at-home orders across the nation.Shoppers,worried about shortages and trying to prepare for lockdowns,snapped up the in-stock supplies.

  到目前为止,由于全国范围内的“在家办公”的要求,对这一系统产生了前所未有的需求,这种短缺问题正在加剧。由于担心库存不足,购物者试图为禁售做准备,抢购了库存商品。

  The complex supply chain network should be well equipped to catch up.And so far,experts say food shortages are not looming either in the U.S.or abroad.

  复杂的供应链网络应该准备好迎头赶上。到目前为止,专家们说,无论是在美国还是在国外,粮食短缺的问题都不会迫在眉睫。

  But that doesn’t mean everything will continue to be as available and plentiful as it has been.Some kinds of food,like fresh produce?That’s another question entirely,says says Megan Konar,a civil engineer and supply chain expert at the University of Illinois,at Urbana-Champaign.“The main potential choke point in the supply chain is produce,”she says.

  但这并不意味着一切都将一如既往地丰富和可用。有些食物,比如新鲜的农产品?伊利诺伊大学厄巴纳-香槟分校的土木工程师和供应链专家Megan Konar表示,这完全是另一个问题。她说,“供应链中潜在的主要瓶颈是农产品。”

  Usually,the supply chain for fresh fruits and vegetables is tight,with grocery stores,restaurants,and other businesses getting just enough deliveries just in time to sell what they can without too much going to waste.But COVID-19-related disruptions—from unprecedented demand for some products to changes in staffing at stores and warehouses,and more—upended many of the systems that usually work nearly seamlessly,leaving some distribution centers overstocked but grocery stores denuded of things like lettuce.

  通常情况下,新鲜水果和蔬菜的供应链是紧张的,杂货店、餐馆和其他企业能及时收到足够的货物,在不浪费太多的情况下出售他们能出售的。但是,与covid19有关的供应中断,从对某些产品的空前需求,到商店和仓库的人员配置变化,以及更多其他因素,颠覆了许多通常几乎无缝运行的系统,导致一些配送中心库存过剩,而杂货店里却没有像生菜这样的东西。

  As a result,trucks of tomatoes and squash have been dumped as waste and small oceans of milk discarded.Experts don’t expect this kind of disruption to continue,assuming the people working in all those supply chain links stay healthy.But if workers get sick,the situation could change quickly.

  结果,成卡车的西红柿和南瓜被当作垃圾扔掉,牛奶也被倒掉。专家们预计,这种中断不会持续下去,前提是所有这些供应链环节的工作人员保持健康。但如果员工生病了,情况可能很快就会改变。

  “We’re seeing this worry,when grocery stores run out of toilet paper or water,we’re seeing this chaos—just imagine if there were no fresh food,”says Joe del Bosque,a California-based farmer.Because his critical harvest season is just getting started,del Bosque says farmworkers are needed“now more than ever.”

  加利福尼亚州农民Joe del Bosque说:“我们看到的是这种担忧,当杂货店的厕纸或水卖完时,会出现这种混乱状态——想象一下是否没有新鲜食品。del Bosque说由于他的关键收获季节刚刚开始,现在比以往任何时候都更需要农场工人。”

  Protecting workers protects everybody

  保护工人就是保护所有人


  So far,there are no reports of farmworkers having come down with COVID-19.But the reliability of that information isn’t clear because testing has been limited in many of the rural regions farmworkers live in,says Andrea Delgado,the government affairs director at United Farm Workers Foundation.

  到目前为止,还没有农场工人感染COVID-19的报道。不过,联合农场工人基金会政府事务主管Andrea Delgado说,这些信息的可靠性尚不清楚,因为很多农村地区的农场工人都受到了检测的限制。

  Farmers,farmworkers,and other people involved in agriculture have been labeled“essential”by the U.S.government,their roles deemed critical to keeping the nation fed during the growing coronavirus crisis.

  农民、农场工人和其他从事农业的人被美国政府贴上了“必不可少”的标签,在日益严重的冠状病毒危机中,他们的角色被认为是维持国家粮食供应的关键。

  But in the U.S.,roughly 50 percent of them are undocumented and exempt from the employment relief offered by the CARES stimulus package,signed by President Trump on March 27.They’re also excluded from the expanded health care protections in the Family First Coronavirus Response Act.That means they will not receive economic support,nor do they have access to the expanded paid sick leave provided for in the acts.

  但是在美国,大约有50%的人没有证件,并且免于特朗普总统于3月27日签署的CARES刺激计划所提供的就业救济。他们也被排除在《家庭第一冠状病毒应对法案》扩大的卫生保健保护之外。这意味着他们将无法获得经济支持,也无法享受该法规定的扩大的带薪病假。

  The stresses are already growing for many farmworkers across California,and the virus hasn’t yet hit many of the rural communities in which they live.Eugenia Gonzales,a farmworker in Parlier,California,has watched as food prices in her local store spiked,if there was even anything left to buy;bottled water became scarce and expensive;the masks she wears to protect against dust disappeared;and the nearby hospital braced for the worst.
纽约时报中英文网 www.qqenglish.com


  对加州各地的许多农场工人来说,压力已经越来越大,而病毒还没有袭击他们居住的许多农村社区。Eugenia Gonzales是加利福尼亚州帕里耶的一名农场工人,她亲眼目睹了当地商店里的食品价格飙升,哪怕还有什么可买的;瓶装水变得稀缺和昂贵;她戴的防尘面具不见了;附近的医院也做好了最坏的打算。

  “We can’t even afford to eat right now,”she says.

  “我们现在甚至吃不起饭,”她说。

  Right now,the picking season should just be gearing up in many parts of the agricultural West.But Gonzales is also concerned that her season won’t even start.She’s been getting ready to prune grapes in a week or two;then,she’ll care for the crops until the picking season in early autumn.But her small town is still bracing for the impact of the virus,and Eugenia is worried that local health resources won’t be sufficient to handle an outbreak.

  现在,西部农业地区的采摘季节刚刚开始。但Gonzales也担心,她的收获季节甚至不会开始。她已经准备好一两个星期去修剪葡萄了;然后,她将照看庄稼直到初秋的采摘季节。但她所在的小镇仍在为病毒的影响做准备,Eugenia担心当地的卫生资源不足以应对疫情的爆发。

  “This is a population that is considered to be essential workers,but they’re invisible,”says Myrna Martinez Nateras,a program director at the American Friends Service Committee,where she works with farmworkers in the Fresno,California region.

  美国朋友服务委员会的项目主管Myrna Martinez Nateras说,“这一群体被认为是必不可少的劳动者,但他们是无形的。”她与加州弗雷斯诺地区的农场工人一起工作。

  Many farmworkers are receiving mixed or no signals from their employers about how to protect themselves,says Lucas Zucker,the police director of the Central Coast Alliance United for a Sustainable Economy.Many told Zucker that as of the last week of March,they had not received information from their employers about the virus or been given access to resources that would help them follow recommended strategies for holding the virus at bay.

  中央海岸可持续经济联盟的警察局长Lucas Zucker说,很多农场工人从雇主那里得到的关于如何保护自己的信息,要么是喜忧参半,要么是毫无头绪。许多人告诉Zucker,截至3月的最后一周,他们还没有从雇主那里收到关于病毒的信息,也没有获得帮助他们遵循建议策略的资源。

  “Everything that’s a systemic problem for farmworker safety under normal times is magnified right now,”says Zucker.

  Zucker说,“在正常情况下,农场工人安全的所有系统性问题现在都被放大了。”

  Some farms,though,have taken the crisis seriously.On del Bosque’s farm—which he says is some 50 miles from the nearest place to get tested for the virus?—the finicky asparagus crop needs careful handling and workers to pick the delicate stalks.As a precaution,pickers work a row apart at all times,and del Bosque added extra wash stations for hand cleaning.

  不过,一些农场已经认真对待了这场危机。在On del Bosque的农场——他说那里离最近的病毒检测地点有50英里远?——挑剔的芦笋作物需要精心处理,工人需要挑选细嫩的茎。作为预防措施,采摘工人在任何时候都是一排一排地工作,del Bosque还为手部清洁增加了额外的清洗站。

  “The fear is really there,”says del Bosque,“that someone could get sick and then a lot of people get sick.”

  del Bosque说,“恐惧确实存在,有些人可能会生病,然后很多人会生病。”

  But the pressure to continue to work under any and all conditions is high.In harvest season,many workers are paid by the piece—strawberry by strawberry,rather than hourly—creating a huge incentive to work as quickly as possible filling boxes.And for many workers,because they lack sick leave,taking time off work if they feel sick is somewhere between difficult and impossible.

  但是在任何情况下继续工作的压力都很大。在收获季节,许多工人的工资是按草莓个数支付的,而不是按小时支付,这极大地刺激了他们尽快填满箱子。对于许多工人来说,因为他们没有病假,所以如果他们感到生病了,请假是一件既困难又不可能的事情。

  Rippling outwards

  向外扩散


  The potential economic losses across the food sector can’t yet be gauged,agricultural economists say.But some early indications hint that the sector is taking a significant hit from the economic shutdown associated with the virus.Local food agricultural markets,which serve farmers markets,schools,restaurants,and more,are looking at more than$1 billion losses between March and May unless more actions are taken to support their businesses,says Thilmany.

  农业经济学家说,整个食品行业的潜在经济损失还无法估量。但一些初步迹象表明,该行业正因与病毒相关的经济关闭而遭受重大打击。为农贸市场、学校、餐馆等提供服务的当地食品农业市场预计,如果不采取更多行动支持它们的业务,3月至5月期间的损失将超过10亿美元。

  About half of California’s produce ends up in restaurants,schools,and other institutions,says Cory Lunde of the Western Growers Association,a trade group that works with farmers.Those markets evaporated as counties and states told residents to stay home.

  与农民合作的贸易组织——西部种植者协会的Cory Lunde说,加州大约有一半的农产品最后都进了餐馆、学校和其他机构。由于各县和州要求居民呆在家里,这些市场消失了。

  The kinds of impacts Thilmany and others anticipate will occur assuming farmworkers show up to their jobs healthy.If the coronavirus spread to them,effects on the food sector would be nearly inevitable.

  许多人和其他人预计,如果农场工人健康地上班,将会出现上述影响。如果冠状病毒传播到他们身上,对食品行业的影响几乎是不可避免的。

  Gonzales,like many other farmworkers,are proud to be labeled“essential”and to play a role in the effort to keep food available for millions of U.S.residents.But she’s also dismayed that more isn’t being done to support farmworkers.

  和许多其他农场工人一样,Gonzales为自己被称为“必需品”而感到自豪,并在为数百万美国居民提供食物的努力中发挥了作用。但她也对政府没有采取更多措施来支持农场工人感到失望。

  “If we’re essential,we need help,”Gonzales says in Spanish.“Because we’re the people feeding the country.”

  “如果我们是必要的,那么我们就需要帮助,”Gonzales用西班牙语说。“因为我们是养活国家的人。”
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