Sarbanes Denounces Higher COVID-19 Infection Rates Among Communities of Color and Demands Swift Action to Address Racial Health Disparities [Video]

At House Health Subcommittee Hearing, Congressman Sarbanes Pointed to Deep-Seated Inequality and Structural Racism as Key Causes of Health Disparities in America
June 17, 2020
CONTACT: Daniel Jacobs
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WASHINGTON, D.C. – At a House Health Subcommittee hearing today, Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) called attention to the higher rates of COVID-19 infections among people of color and urged swift federal action to address health disparities and improve health outcomes for all Americans.

“Maryland, like the rest of the country, is suffering and communities of color in Maryland have been particularly hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic,” said Congressman Sarbanes. “There’s lots of different reasons for this ... but among them, certainly, are the longstanding issues like inequality and racism that we experience in our country.”

Sarbanes continued: “In my state, African Americans are now accounting for 29 percent of the population but 41 percent of the coronavirus deaths. Hispanic, or LatinX individuals, are 10 percent of the population but represent 33 percent of the diagnosed coronavirus cases – so these numbers obviously are unacceptable. We’re working hard in this committee, and in Congress, to address the root causes.”

See below for the Congressman’s full remarks.