The coronavirus is tearing through Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander communities in California
, fanning longstanding health disparities and killing community members at a higher rate than any other racial group in the state.
Data from California’s department of public health reveals that Pacific Islanders have contracted coronavirus at nearly twice
the state’s overall rate. As of 17 May, they have died from the virus at a rate 2.6 times higher than the state population – the highest death rate of any racial or ethnic group.
The pattern extends beyond California. Oregon
, Utah, Washington and Arkansas
– where many Marshallese work in meatpacking plants – have all seen similar trends.