EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – El Paso Congresswoman Veronica Escobar says in order to return to normal there needs to be robust testing and contact tracing, which she says Texas does not have.
Doctor Anthony Fauci, who is part of the White House COVID-19 task force, says communities like El Paso are very susceptible to the virus.
Fauci spoke with the Hispanic Caucus of the U.S. House, which Congresswoman Veronica Escobar is a part of.
Durng an interview with KTSM, Escobar said Latinos represent 19 percent of the country’s population, but 28 percent of virus deaths.
Escobar says according to Fauci, minority communities like El Paso face two main challenges. Underlying health conditions like diabetes, and economic challenges like poverty and lack of access to healthcare.
Congresswoman Escobar also spoke to Dr. Fauci about the reopening of Texas.
“I told him that the state is set to open up tomorrow albeit it’s a gradual opening, we’re going to be open tomorrow. I asked him what his thoughts were. He said that communities like ours are as vulnerable as a nursing home is,” Escobar said.
Escobar adds that she has also spoken with El Paso Mayor Dee Margo and County Judge Ricardo Samaniego. Escobar says the county needs testing and contact tracing to prevent another outbreak.
“Without a plan for vulnerable communities or a plan for robust testing, re-opening Texas is reckless, puts El Pasoans at risk, and governor Abbot’s decision to tie the hands of local officials who are best positioned to protect their communities is particularly irresponsible,” said Escobar.