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Black people are dying at two-three times our population share from COVID-19. In Los Angeles County, the rate of Black death is twice our population share, with Black people constituting 9% of the County population, but 17% of the COVID-19 deaths. With nearly 900,000 Black residents in the County and 403,000 Black residents in the City (the eighth highest number of any city in the United States), what happens in Los Angeles has serious national implications. While several initiatives have been launched nationally, state-wide and locally, none speak to the particular needs of the Black community. The disproportionate and deadly impact of COVID-19 on the Black community magnifies what we have known, that “underlying conditions” result from an enduring system of racial apartheid and oppression. Interlocking economic, political, and social injustices collide with long-standing patterns of medical racism to make COVID-19 a Black issue that demands a response specific to the needs of the Black community. The demands were developed by a coalition of more than 50 Black Los Angeles-based community leaders. Included are both immediate demands meant for emergency implementation during the Coronavirus crisis, and long-term demands, necessary to eradicate the underlying conditions that are at the root of the disproportionate impact of the public health crisis and economic fallout.







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