UpFront

India on lockdown: the pandemic is creating a humanitarian crisis, millions face hunger; Plus: A roundup of daily life in the COVID era and mutual aid spotlight on the Performing Arts Workers Relief Fund

0:10 – April is here, and some people aren’t just demanding rent cancellation — they’re taking matters into their own hands, by organizing rent strikes. KPFA’s Wren Farrell reports.

0:15 -KPFA News – Some cities have declared eviction moratoriums to prevent people who can’t work during the crisis from losing their housing too. But there’s a growing number of organizations calling for rent and mortgage payments to be cancelled altogether — they say a lot of people won’t be able to catch up even when they are allowed to go back to work. KPFA’s Luanna Muniz reports. 

0:23 – India on lockdown

Vidya Krishnan (@VidyaKrishnan) is a writer and journalist, based in Goa, India. Her first book, Phantom Plague: The Untold Story of How Tuberculosis Shaped our History will be published by PublicAffairs (NB one word) in 2021. Her latest piece in the Atlantic is ‘The Callousness of India’s COVID-19 response

0:34 – Q&A: Ask a public health expert

John Swartzberg, MD, is Clinical Professor Emeritus of Infectious Diseases & Vaccinology at UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health.

1:08 – Florida: Gov. Rick DeSantis issues belated shelter-in-place 

Mitch Perry (@MitchPerry18) is a political reporter for Spectrum Bay News 9 in Tampa.

1:34 – Now a roundup on what’s happening in daily life during COVID-19. Let’s start with one of our front-line medical workers, who describes her emergency room as being in “the calm before the storm” — an expected wave of COVID-19 cases hasn’t crested yet, and they have fewer patients than normal because everyone who can stay away, is staying away. 

Bridget Parr is an ER nurse at UCSF, and a union representative with the CA Nurses Association. She spoke with our reporter Lucy Kang (@ThisIsLucyKang). 

Note: We reached out to UCSF management for an update, and got a response from their director of clinical communications Kristen Bole. She said UCSF has opened a separate unit for COVID-19 patients, so staff working with them *know* their status. She said UCSF is currently holding steady with about 15 patients with COVID-19 at any given time, and has Personal Protective equipment supplies to last several weeks, though she did say testing swaps and face shield are –quote “in very short supply.” 

1:40 – Now a look at what’s happening inside the institutions where a coronavirus outbreak would be extremely deadly: nursing homes. A grassroots coalition of nursing homes in Los Angeles is both working with factories in the garment district to produce reusable personal protective equipment–AND imploring the federal government to invoke the Defense Production Act now, to supplement those efforts. KPFA’s Chris Lee reports.

1:45 – A look into what’s happening to the world of theater — where nonprofit arts organizations are scrambling to serve their audiences by moving what they do online. Here’s KPFA’s Richard Wolinsky

1:50 – Mutual aid spotlight: Performing Arts Workers Fund

Brad Erickson is the executive director of the Theater Bay Area, organizing the Performing Arts Workers Relief Fund.

 

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