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COVID-19 Cases, Hospitalizations Surge Among Unvaccinated San Diegans

 July 22, 2021 at 12:46 PM PDT

Speaker 1: 00:00 With the number of COVID 19 cases on the rise, hospitals are feeling Speaker 2: 00:05 Either unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated. People are the ones that are coming into the hospital. Speaker 1: 00:12 I'm Christina Kim with Marine cabinet. This is KPBS midday edition. Speaker 3: 00:24 [inaudible] Speaker 1: 00:24 People living in high risk fire areas may soon have access to more affordable and extensive insurance coverage. Speaker 2: 00:31 The fair plan is a very important plan and it's not perfect. And this ruling is trying to make it a little bit better. Speaker 1: 00:39 San Diego rescue mission will oversee Oceanside's homeless shelter and what to expect from Escondido's first ever pride celebration. This weekend that's ahead on midday edition. COVID 19 infections across San Diego are surging and county officials are bolstering their efforts to vaccinate more residents in an effort to slow the spread. The local spike in cases mirrors a nationwide trend where health officials are now warning that the nation's COVID-19 situation is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated. Joining me with more on these developments is Dr. Williams sang a hospitalist at Kaiser Permanente, San Diego. Welcome to midday, Dr. Sang. Thank you very much. Rev me this week, San Diego county sign, 82% increase in the number of COVID 19 cases. Are you and your team at Kaiser starting to feel the impact of this spike? Speaker 2: 01:38 Uh, yes we are. We're we're seeing both the ambulatory section also in the hospital as well. So we are seeing cases, uh, steadily increased. The Delta variant is really the one that everybody is talking about. That's concerning, you know, the San Diego county has been tracking it all along. It started with 16 cases. A couple of weeks ago, then went to 25, then the 52, and now it's 103. And, uh, yesterday I think they came out with new numbers, but it's almost doubling every week. And we can see that as Speaker 1: 02:07 We mentioned, many health officials are calling this, the pandemic of the unvaccinated are the patients that you're treating mostly in vaccinated. Speaker 2: 02:14 Yes. So I would say over 80 to 90% are un-vaccinated. And the reason is that, um, the people who are vaccinated, some of them, even if they get infected, because you have that immunity, you attack the virus. So your viral load in your body is much, much lower to a point where you're barely symptomatic. So maybe a little sore throat, a runny nose, and that's about it. And we actually pick them up on happenstance just because they are here to check out or they're there to get surgery or something. And then they do a routine testing. They pick them up that way. There are people who come into the ambulatory symptomatic, like I've got a sore throat cold. I just want to get it checked out. And then they test positive. And then they're the ones that come into the hospital and test positive there. Now those predominantly are the unvaccinated or incompletely vaccine, meaning they had one dose and in follow up for the second dose. So either unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated, people are the ones that are coming into the hospital ending up, being admitted. Speaker 1: 03:21 So that second dose is also important that you are seeing that it's not just the unvaccinated, but those who are not completely vaccinated. Speaker 2: 03:28 Yes, definitely. Yes. Speaker 1: 03:30 San Diego county, 69% of the eligible population has been fully vaccinated, which is just shy of that 75% goal. Mark. How much of the population needs to be fully vaccinated to really see a stop in this uptick in cases? Speaker 2: 03:44 That's a great question. Um, because you know, when we talk about the percentage needed to be vaccinated before you reach that hurting me, it also depends on the virus itself. So for things like measles, you need a 90, 92% vaccination rate to get that protection because it is more infectious, meaning it's more easily transmitted for the ones that are less likely to Tremont. Obviously you can have a lower level. Now that number has been debated. Dr. Fowchee had one said that it needs 90%, a lot of people for the flu, uh, 70 to 80% right now, um, in San Diego county, we've administered over 4.1 million doses of vaccine. So we're doing much better than the state and we'll do definitely much better than the country, but again, it's really that unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated population that we're looking at. So reach herd immunity. I would say it's probably somewhere between 80 and 90% is where we need to be to protect the people who are unvaccinated. So having the people who vaccinated protect the people who are unvaccinated, we would need to reach about 80 to 90%. Speaker 1: 04:54 So the Delta variant were increasing exponentially in previous weeks, but the latest county update actually seems to show that that Delta variant is slowing how prominent are Delta variant infections in the CA in the caseload that you and your team are working on Speaker 2: 05:08 The Delta Varian for last Wednesday. So, um, was 122 cases. So it shot up very quickly and then it slowed down and, you know, part of the reason could be what I turned to with the vaccine firewall, right? We get as many people vaccine as possible. So even the vaccinate, it protects the unvaccinated. And if we can have a strong enough force, and I believe this is the case because San Diego we've been very aggressive as a county, uh, with the help of the health and human services of the county and all the health system working together, we've been able to, to hold it at bay better than I think. Um, other counties have been Speaker 1: 05:47 In your opinion, do you think the county should reinstate it's masked mandate, Speaker 2: 05:52 The mass protects the, um, others more than, uh, protects yourself. It does protect yourself if you wear the mask, but it's really, if you are carrying the virus and you wear a mask, you really limit the spread. So it is a community benefits, meaning I protect you and you protect me. Um, the mass mandate will definitely slow, uh, the virus spread around. So yes, I think it is a good idea, outdoors, a different situation, but indoors definitely Speaker 1: 06:25 Finally, for people listening right now, what do you recommend they do to stay safe and healthy as we continue to see these numbers, Speaker 2: 06:33 I think get vaccinated. If you're even thinking about it, get vaccinated is the best way to protect you from catching COVID, spreading COVID or dying from COVID. There's great evidence that, um, uh, the vaccine itself prevents you from getting it, but also prevents you from dying from it. Um, I think before the Delta variant was, um, started taking off, we knew that, um, the cases of getting infected a breakthrough infection was like one in 10,000 and the death goes from one in 545 to one in half a million or more. So it is a great way to, to protect you, your family and our community let's help each other, protect each other, get vaccinated. And that will stop the Delta virus variant. I know people keep talking about Delta, Delta, Delta, but really the answer is vaccine vaccine vaccine. So let's get out there and take care of each other. Speaker 1: 07:35 Your Williams sang a hospitalist at Kaiser Permanente, San Diego. Thank you. Thank you. Speaker 4: 07:47 Massive wildfires continued to burn in California and of the two largest. The Dixie fire has been burning for the last week near the recently fire ravaged town of paradise. It's scorched more than 100, 3000 acres. And as of this morning is only 17% contained. The Beckworth complex fire burning for more than two weeks near Reno as destroyed more than 100,000 acres while huge fires are burning across the state in rural areas, even a small brush fire can be devastating. One unincorporated community and two Lauri county is struggling to recover after a fire burned down a lifeline for the community. Earlier this month, Speaker 5: 08:32 Aziz Hassan walks through the remains of his trailer home and the mini Mart that his family has owned for more than 50 years in Poplar on July 9th, he says a power line that ran through a tree in between his property and his neighbors sparked it caught fire on this tree. The first tree that blamed that up from on top started going down. Once they hit the floor, then CVA garage caught on fire. The CVA is the central valley empowerment Alliance. It's a community-based organization that was supposed to hold a youth vaccination event that day. According to executive director, Maria Perez, really no kids were injured, but the supplies intended for them were destroyed. We expected over 400 students to come from all over the area. And we had backpacks fields with supplies, lunch boxes. We had over a hundred thousand dollars of clothing from forever 21. Speaker 5: 09:30 While the CVA garage caught on fire, the only structural damage was on the roof. Still. She says the items inside the garage, including six quinceanera addresses, canned food and school supplies are unsalvageable. And I recognize that even at the midst of all of this, we are one of the luckier ones, others weren't so lucky. The Porterville fire department said the cause of the blaze is still under investigation. What residents know for sure is not within 30 minutes, the fire had destroyed two trailer homes and damaged another house. It also burned Adam's market. The mini Mart that was home to for immigrant owned businesses. They were the lifeline for people living in the community and surrounding areas. People come from far to shop, to cash their checks, um, to get their hair done, to transfer monies to their families, families living in Mexico, central America and Yemen. She says most residents in Poplar are undocumented and low-income now the only business left in their community is another small grocery store. Even though we are in the central valley, we provide food for the world. We find ourselves in a food desert. And when one of our two grocery stores, the oldest one in town becomes ashes. It has an impact that is beyond Poplar, sadly on Nell cruise Chavez who rented a room next door to Adam's market needs to find immediate housing Speaker 6: 11:03 Right now. We're not sleeping there. We're sleeping in our cars. Speaker 5: 11:05 Javez says he works the night shift at a dairy farm, three minutes away. That's where he showers. He then heads to his car to sleep in the record, breaking heat, the air conditioner there I am struggling. My deep it is Ruiz says the red cross offered the displaced people $500 vouchers for hotels, but that only covered about three nights in the area. And she says the community is facing a housing crisis, making it more difficult to assess ad and the other 11 displaced people to find a place to live, right, finding housing. You know, the, the only option for many will be to move out of the community in that that's displacement, just because there's no housing available. That's why she says reached out to state Senator Melissa [inaudible] and county supervisor, Dennis Thompson for help. Senator [inaudible] says she will do what she can to connect the community with resources that can help. In the meantime, Perez Ruiz says the community will focus on rebuilding I'm Marty Bolanos. Speaker 4: 12:11 This story was part of the central news collaborative, which is supported by the central valley community foundation with technology and training support by Microsoft homeowners in high-risk wildfire areas. We'll soon be able to get more insurance coverage at a lower cost. According to a state court ruling this month, the decision expands the coverage California's so-called insurer of last resort must offer to consumers. The California fair access to insurance requirements plan or fair plan has been offering fire only policies to people who can't get traditional homeowners insurance because of wildfire risk. The ruling allows the state insurance commission to order the fair plan to include insurance coverage for things like theft and liability. Johnnie Mae is Amy Bach. She is executive director of United policy holders, a nonprofit that advocates for consumers. Amy, welcome to the program, Speaker 2: 13:10 Maureen, thanks so much for having us on. Speaker 4: 13:12 Now. California's incredibly destructive wildfires in recent years have led up to the creation of the fair plan. Tell us why it was needed. Speaker 2: 13:22 The insurance industry, uh, is like any other, uh, profit oriented industry. And, uh, they have, uh, looked at wildfire risk in California and decided almost in a sort of a herd like way, uh, that they are less interested in selling insurance to customers in wildfire prone areas of the state. So that meant that those residents suddenly had a big problem on their hands. Many of them came to our organization for help and to the California department of insurance and the bottom line, the fair plan is a very important plan and it's not perfect. And this ruling is trying to make it a little bit better. Speaker 4: 14:05 Who makes up the fair plan? Insurers are the, are these private insurance companies? Speaker 2: 14:11 Yes, primarily that their plan is run by a governing board that is consists of mostly insurance company executives. Uh, there, uh, there's a, there's a public member. Um, the governor and the insurance commissioner has some role as well, primarily though, uh, it's private insurance companies that call the shots on how that their plan runs. Speaker 4: 14:34 So the fair plan stepped in to cover fire risk for many homes, but that's all the insurance the plan would provide. What did homeowners do for the other protections? A traditional insurance policy would give them, Speaker 2: 14:47 They either went there, didn't insurance for things like, um, you know, your dishwasher, hose breaks, and there's a flood. Um, the fair plan wouldn't pay for that, you know, the, uh, somebody trips on your property sues you the fair plan wouldn't wouldn't cover that. So either people went bare for those exposures, those risk exposures, or they could buy something called a difference in conditions, policy. And there hadn't been a whole lot of options for those, uh, difference in conditions, policies up until about a year or two ago when, uh, suddenly there was a demand in the market for more of these they're gap fillers that you can call them DIC policies, gap fillers, um, the consumer demand, more people were going into the fair plan, finding out that they didn't have full coverage and then wanting to, to fill the gap and then shopping for DIC. So while a couple of years ago, there would have just been a handful of DIC options. Now there are many most insurers, uh, started selling these gap fillers so that they could hold on to customers even after they went to the fair plan. Speaker 4: 16:00 And are those gap filler policies expensive? Speaker 2: 16:03 Yes. You know, we're hearing, uh, quotes from anywhere from 3000 to as high as 20,000, depending on the size of the house and location, Speaker 4: 16:14 State insurance commissioner, Ricardo Lara ordered the fair plan association to broaden its coverage options. The fair plan refused. What did they refuse? Speaker 2: 16:25 The insurers that run the program? Uh, really, uh, don't well, they don't really like the program that much, to be honest. Um, it's an involuntary program, so they have to participate. And I think, um, you know, insurance executives are always, you know, looking at the bottom line and I think they, they felt well, uh, we don't want the fair plan to be competing, um, in the, you know, with, with private options. And, uh, they want to live at the fair plans, pay out exposure because they, some of that money comes out of their, uh, you know, out of their resources, the private insurers pet, you know, how they have a, um, proportional share in pain losses that the fair plan has to pay out on. Speaker 4: 17:13 So the court ruled that the state has the authority to order a fair, to provide expanded coverage. How quickly could that expanded coverage go into an effect? Speaker 2: 17:24 My guess it's not going to be tomorrow. Uh, my guess is, uh, that the fair plan may, uh, is likely to pursue all avenues of appeal and or reconsideration. Speaker 4: 17:37 Well, this is a victory for homeowners in high-risk fire areas, but in the larger picture, isn't the high cost of insurance. One of the factors that's meant to discourage people from living in high risk areas, considering that most of our wildfires are caused by human activity. Speaker 2: 17:55 Absolutely. Maureen, there's no question, uh, that the, uh, that the risk of wildfires has increased and yes. Um, to a certain extent, the cost of your insurance relates to your risk to a, to a large extent, you know, that said there are a lot of people that are living that are getting charged, um, a lot more than they had been being charged for their home insurance that don't live in the highest risk areas. So we're, we're pursuing solutions on a number of levels. There's no question, you know, that there should be, um, there should not be new develop new building going on in Rui, in the wild land, urban interface at the same rate that it had been happening, you know, that we now know that, um, it's just, it's just too risky for, um, for there to be large numbers of people living in areas that, that have a habit of burning. Uh, however, you know, this is all a matter of degree, right? You know, somebody who's been living in an area their whole lives, um, and, and suddenly, you know, they're, they're, they're being priced out because of the cost of insurance that doesn't sit well with people. Speaker 4: 19:06 The damage figure for last year's wildfire season in California is estimated at $10 billion in property damage. How is the fair plan going to be able to handle losses like that now or in the future? Speaker 2: 19:19 Well, they do have the full, um, financial strength of all the participating insurers. You know, it's actually, technically it's an association, the fair plan of, uh, of multiple insurance companies. So each one of them has their own financial resources, uh, and their own re-insurance, you know, so the fair plan, their financial strength, uh, has, uh, has to meet state standards. And so, you know, it's, as, as things stand now, you know, the num the fair plan can handle the number of customers that they've got. At least they should be able to, uh, if their policy count continues to grow at the same rate it's been growing, the coverage is going to continue to be expensive. Uh, and the state may need to come up with some more creative solutions to, to making sure that the fair plan has all the, the reserves and the financial capacity that it needs to meet its obligations. Speaker 4: 20:20 And I've been speaking with Amy Bach, she's executive director of United policy holders, a nonprofit that advocates for consumers. Amy, thank you very much. Thanks so much, Maureen. This is KPBS midday edition. I'm Maureen Kavanaugh with Christina Kim in for Jade Heinemann ocean side will soon have its first year round homeless shelter, but who will it be open to KPBS north county reporter? Tanya thorn gives us the details of what we can expect to see early next year. Speaker 7: 20:57 A school that once served at-risk students will soon serve ocean sites, homeless ocean shores, high school, located on Oceanside Boulevard in El Camino real will turn into the city's first year round homeless shelter. Didn't Speaker 8: 21:10 Think we would get it. And in the end, they selected us to be their service provider. And I can't tell you how excited we are. Speaker 7: 21:18 Donnie D is the president of the San Diego rescue mission Speaker 8: 21:21 For us because we own our properties. We own our assets. But what I love about this is it's an opportunity for the public and the private to work together on behalf of people who are living on the streets, Speaker 7: 21:33 The rescue mission, which will operate the Oceanside shelter currently operates a 360 bed shelter in downtown San Diego. While the San Diego location will serve as a model for the Oceanside shelter, there are some differences Speaker 8: 21:47 That property and ocean side's going to be a drop-off facility. We'll work very closely with the hot team and Oceanside with their police department will work very closely with other agencies and they will refer people experiencing homelessness that need a place to stay to the San Diego rescue mission, ocean shores camp. Speaker 7: 22:04 The Oceanside shelter will be open to men, women, and families, Leanna quirk, and her husband have been homeless for over four years and are now staying in a donated RV. They know all too well, the need for shelters, for families. There's Speaker 9: 22:18 Nothing for families. That's the hardest part. Me and my husband were married 20 years. And even when we went to the hotel program, they kind of told us, well, would you guys be willing to separate and get rid of your dogs? Or we don't want to be separated. And I can't get rid of my dogs. Speaker 7: 22:35 Quirk stalks became her support when she lost her children to foster care. And when she started getting seizures, cork things, the rescue missions shelter will be great news to the homeless in the area. Speaker 9: 22:45 I know a lot of people that want help, you know, and unfortunately they don't know how to get it. The shelter Speaker 7: 22:49 Will offer 50 beds with overnight and day use for 30 days. Again, Donnie D Speaker 8: 22:55 We'll have 30 days to stay there and it will be through that relationship that we'll figure out. Do you need to go downtown and be a part of the long-term program? Do you need to go to detox? Do you need a skilled nursing facility? Uh, we'll do triage at these facilities and figure out what's their path forward. Speaker 7: 23:09 The rescue missions plans. First start with every model of the existing facility. It's Speaker 8: 23:14 Got, um, a bunch of individual rooms that were classrooms, and we will break up those rooms around gender and, and around family oriented. Speaker 7: 23:24 But does the plan account for sexual orientation? Some people are raising the question, max, this boasty is the executive director of the north county LGBTQ resource center. He says a large part of the homeless population identifies as LGBTQ and the lack of inclusiveness pushes them away from shelters. Speaker 2: 23:42 You know, there is a reason why our population population prefers to sleep under the bridge. Literally, you know, we're using public land, the resources, um, they're, they're supposed to guarantee that protection Speaker 7: 23:54 Disposed. He says, he's concerned the rescue missions plan excludes the LGBTQ homeless. Speaker 2: 23:59 What is your track record? What do you do when a transfer, some comes in? How do you protect them? Speaker 7: 24:05 Just posted. He says, community relationships are very important when it comes to referring people, to agencies for help Speaker 2: 24:10 In order for us to do a referral to another service provider that can have services that we don't have, like housing. And so for it, we ask a lot of questions is okay, is your staff trained? It is trained. Who did the training when they were training? Speaker 7: 24:25 Dani D said the San Diego rescue mission has never denied access to services based on religious belief or sexual identity. He says he welcomes community partners to the Oceanside facility. So Speaker 8: 24:36 Committed to that approach, that we'll actually have office space in our facility at ocean shores for other agencies, because we want that kind of relationship. That's just as an our thing. It's not just the San Diego rescue mission thing. It's the community of ocean side project. And we want to serve that city. Well, Speaker 7: 24:54 If approved remodeling of the facility will start later this year and the shelter is expected to be up and running by next year. Speaker 4: 25:03 Joining me is KPBS north county reporter Tonya Thorne, Tonya. Welcome. Thanks, Maureen. How was the San Diego rescue mission chosen to run Oceanside's homeless shelter? Well, this Speaker 7: 25:18 Decision to have the San Diego rescue mission, um, run Oceanside shelters came as a surprise to many. It was a topic at several city council meetings. A preliminary decision had already been made on a different organization, but in the end, they voted on the rescue mission for one major difference in the plans. And, and it's a big one. You know, the rescue mission would not need any city funding to operate while the other organization requested a million dollars in annual operating costs from the city. So that was, that was a big major difference that ultimately led to this decision. Speaker 4: 25:53 Were there any homeless service providers in the running who were more familiar with ocean side and its homeless population? Well, Speaker 7: 26:02 The other organization in consideration was interfaith community services, and they were actually the organization recommended by the Oceanside city staff and housing commission to run the shelter because of their very presence and track record in north county. They already have several offices in place throughout north county. They work with ocean sites, homeless outreach team. They work with the veterans association and they recently opened a motel of healing and Escondido to expand their services. After the city's recommendation, everyone thought interfaith would be the one, but the city decided to have both organizations come back and present their plans. And again, the biggest difference where the operating costs, the rescue wasn't requesting in order to operate Speaker 4: 26:46 Homeless services that are provided by the rescue mission in downtown San Diego sound very different from what ocean side intends to do, for instance, will there be any of the rescue missions, faith based rehab set up on the ocean shores site? Speaker 7: 27:04 Yeah, you know, we, we took a tour of the downtown San Diego rescue missions shelter, and there are some differences. Um, for example, in Oceanside, they will not be any longterm residential housing. Like we see at the mission stand town location, but Donnie D the CEO of the rescue mission tells me that the downtown location will be an option for people staying in the Oceanside shelter. So while the location is a 30 day, stay in Oceanside within those 30 days, options will be explored as to what that person needs and wants. Do they want to join the faith-based residential program downtown? Do they need rehab? Do they need a nursing facility? So all those options will be explored at the Oceanside shelter that could ultimately lead them downtown. Speaker 4: 27:47 How else is the Oceanside shelter different from the rescue missions, downtown San Diego shelter? Speaker 7: 27:54 You know, another big difference. Donnie D told me that the Oceanside location will be open to men, women, and families. That's something different from their emergency shelter downtown that only takes women and children. Another difference is that the Oceanside shelter will be a drop-off location. Dani D says he will work with the Oceanside homeless outreach team and other agencies to refer people to that shelter. Speaker 4: 28:17 Now, Donny D as you say, the CEO of president of San Diego rescue mission says that they'll be using a triage concept to determine the next step for people at the shelter, but does ocean side have any sort of next step services for the homeless or will they have to go to other areas of the county? Speaker 7: 28:39 You know, there are a couple of organizations and resources that assist people experiencing homelessness in Oceanside, but nothing with a permanent shelter that is open to everyone. The city of Oceanside does have that motel voucher program, but many of the people I've spoken to say that, that hasn't been very successful for that very reason, once they're in the motel, the next step is either relocation or separation from their families if they want to secure housing. So I'm really curious to see how many people choose to move into the missions residential program from Oceanside to downtown, because ultimately, you know, that is relocating from an area that Speaker 4: 29:15 They know. And why, who was the head of the north county LGBTQ resource center concerned about the choice of the rescue mission. Speaker 7: 29:24 Max dispose to the executive director of the north county LGBTQ center says that the Sandy Goreski mission doesn't have much of a track record in north county just to start. And he doesn't know of them working with any LGBTQ center at their downtown location. For instance, interfaith community has faith-based programs as well, but they have actually invited this post-it to look into any barriers preventing the LGBTQ community from seeking help from them. So he's concerned that the rescue mission won't have that inclusiveness because they haven't reached out to him or any other LGBTQ organization that he knows of. And another point that disposed state brought up was that this shelter and ocean site is being placed on city owned land, public land, meaning it needs to be open to everyone. Okay. Speaker 4: 30:09 So the new ocean side shelter is supposed to be up and running next year, but will there be anywhere for unsheltered to go in Oceanside this winter? Speaker 7: 30:20 You know, Maureen, aside from the motel voucher program or programs outside of the city? I don't think so. And you know, we're also dealing with a high population of homeless people that are on the streets. Now, many of the shelters that are set up are already at full capacity. I really wouldn't be surprised if the rescue missions shelter gets full as soon as it opens. But Donnie D also said that they are an escrow for another shelter in the south bay. So if that deal closes, it could be more beds to filter people into once they're all set up and running. So I think it'll be really interesting to see how this plays out in the next couple of months. Speaker 4: 30:55 All right, then I've been speaking with KPBS county reporter, Tanya thorn, Tanya, thank you. Happy to be here. Thank you. Speaker 1: 31:14 July is pride month here in San Diego county. And while many of the events are centered around Hillcrest this year, the celebrations are moving further. North Escondido is hosting its first ever pride celebration. This Saturday at kit Carson park, a historic moment for the traditionally conservative city. For more on the significance of this event, we're joined by the organizer of Escondido's inaugural pride. [inaudible] welcome to midday. Hi, thank you. So what inspired you to organize Escondido's first ever pride event? Um, Speaker 10: 31:43 Well, I grew up here in Escondido and it's definitely has always been very conservative. Um, I wanted to bring more visibility to our LGBT community, that there is quite a bit of here in Escondido. So we wanted to finally provide a free event that our LGBT community could come together and enjoy. Speaker 1: 32:01 Why do you think it's important to host a pride event up in inland north county, as opposed to, you know, in Hillcrest or aware of their celebrations have traditionally been hosted? Speaker 10: 32:09 I think a lot of times our BiPAP communities don't always get a chance to celebrate and the far off prides. So it was nice to have something that was hometown free, that they can come and enjoy and be around their local citizens. Speaker 1: 32:24 As you've been planning, the festivities who have you centered as the events, primary audience, you know, who are you really making this event? Speaker 10: 32:31 Uh, this event is mostly focused for our BiPAP LGBT community that normally gets pushed out of those kinds of spaces. Speaker 1: 32:40 Can you say a little bit more? Why is that so important to you? Why are you seeing that as a, as a real need to center the BiPAP LGBTQ community this year? Speaker 10: 32:48 Um, so it is important for our BiPAP LGBT community to get more visibility and representation within our community because, um, they're so underserved even in a lot of LGBT spaces, um, it's predominantly white leadership in those spaces. So we wanted the chance for our BiPAP communities to come out, enjoy, and also be able to connect with other people. Speaker 1: 33:14 Escondido pride is just going to have a different flavor. Is it going to be different than other prides that we have in the county? How will you make it? So it's perfectly and uniquely Escondido Speaker 10: 33:22 The way we're making it Escondido is through the culture that we're targeting. Like I said, this event is BiPAP focus. So we are, um, bringing a lot of our Latin X culture and to, um, this event. And we're mostly trying to make it so that this is so community-based and focused that isn't based off of corporations or anything like this. This was mostly all done through donations, through local businesses, through local community volunteers and organizers. Um, so it's really a community-based event. So Speaker 1: 33:57 Escondido has long been a more conservative community. Have you received any pushback against the event? Speaker 10: 34:02 No, we haven't actually received any pushback against the event. We've received a lot of loving support from the community, but we are going to be staying very vigilant for the day of Speaker 1: 34:12 When you say you're going to be staying vigilant, what are you going to be vigilant for exactly? Speaker 10: 34:16 Uh, we do have, um, security that we'll be keeping an eye out for any kind of counter protests or any problem makers really. Speaker 1: 34:23 And have you heard from anybody in the LGBTQ community? Who's just so thankful that this is finally happening, you know, in their own backyard and their own town. Speaker 10: 34:31 Yes. We almost receive a message every day, if not multiple from citizens, just telling us how much this means to them and how excited that they are to see this happen in their neighborhood and a place where they weren't always felt welcome. Candido Speaker 1: 34:45 Mayor Paul McNamara told KBS that he's excited for the event because he sh it shows that the city is becoming more inclusive and welcoming as someone that lives in Escondido. Do you see that? Do you see that the city is changing in some way? Speaker 10: 34:57 I think that the parts of the city that have always been ready for change are now stepping forward. Um, I'm not sure if we've created change in the spaces that they didn't want to move forward, but, um, we are taking charge of that change and we're demanding it now. Okay. Speaker 1: 35:15 So I want to get back to Escondido pride. I mean, it is a huge celebration. It is the first one ever. What events and performances do you have planned for this Saturday? Speaker 10: 35:24 Oh, we have a lot of really great performances. We have a few bands that are coming out. We have some drag performances, we have a dance crew that's going to be performing on and they're going to be going all throughout the day. So it's going to be hard to walk away from the stage. We do have a dog competition, art gallery, some games for children to play with and some free activities as well. Speaker 1: 35:47 And do you hope to make us Candido pride an ongoing annual event? Speaker 10: 35:50 Uh, absolutely. This is the first one, but it's definitely not the last. And we're going to keep pushing to have it bigger and better each year. And hopefully it will become a pride destination, just like other events. I've Speaker 1: 36:01 Been speaking with Leo [inaudible] organizer of Escondido pride, which will take place this Saturday at kit Carson park from two to 7:30 PM. Thank you. Thanks. Speaker 3: 36:17 [inaudible] Speaker 1: 36:20 This is KPBS mid day edition. I'm Christina Kim in for Jade Heinemann with Maureen Kavanaugh. Shouldn't be Decatur, grew up crossing international borders. Eventually the Japanese artists landed in San Diego where he founded the Oshawa project, a San Diego based non-profit that focuses on teaching kids, how to use photography and art to tell their own stories, but to Qaeda says it wasn't until he moves south of the border to Tijuana that he learned to start calling himself an artist Takita has an exhibit on view at [inaudible] or coot through August 8th in a short bonus episode of KPBS, his border podcast, port of entry to Qaeda talks to host Alan Lilienthal and producer Kinsey. Morlin about how crossing multiple borders have shaped his life and career. Speaker 6: 37:04 We just walked in. I haven't been here in a long time because of the pandemic. So we're going to go meet shin PEI. I don't know much about them, but I've heard a lot of, I have friends who work for him. He's a big presence in the cross border region. I like just his name. You hear his name a lot. So shin pay is well-known in our region as border artists because he lived and made our [inaudible] in San Diego for decades. But these days he's truly a global sort of borderless artists who travels all over the world to showing his art right now. He's living in Germany, but his life actually started in Japan. Speaker 11: 37:41 Yes, I was born in Japan, in Osaka. And then I was in my parents was always worked for a company. They were always getting sent to different places. So I was in Germany for five years, my childhood, then I was in Chicago for a little bit, and then back to Japan and for university, I went to North Carolina and then from there, I came to San Diego and I started this awareness. It should go. The other project, Speaker 6: 38:08 The Azure project by the way, is a nonprofit that works with refugee youth and other kids by teaching them photography and other artistic and storytelling skills. That's a great organization. Speaker 11: 38:19 Great. And then now it's 20 years. And then, then I was kind of tired of, um, you know, American, um, I think what should we say? You know, you come to us and you want, you learn the language and you master and you use it and you become of tired of your, um, um, individuality too much. I, I, because when I first learned, I, I want, I, you know, and it's, it's a language you have to insist. I want, I think, I believe, you know, you know, you have to insist, you have to fight for it. That's the only way to survive in the American society, I think. And that leaves you very lonely, you know, I think with your eye. So I got bored and I was like, wow, what's this distance between people. And so when I came down, you know, because my friends wanted back there and want it to be, um, Lira. Speaker 11: 39:14 So I come down with him and he rented an apartment and I started living there. And that was the first time. And that was 2004 or three or something. Yeah. And then the first people I met was in, um, artists. No, for me, the artist is a little different than artists. When you say artists here, at least in Mexican cities, the snore and TJ too, you have a different kind of responsibility. I think they treat you a little bit like a, um, kind of a documentarian of the city. You are the, they treat you like, you are kind of like the type, you know, documenting machine of what's happening now. Speaker 6: 39:53 So after meeting more and more artists in Tijuana, Shimpy realized that he too had something to say about what was happening in the world. Speaker 11: 40:01 I started wanting to, because of my work with the other project was trying to give voice to and work with young people. Uh, people from immigrants know, people, refugee kids know, and I was trying to put their work so big. I was making their photographs so big and so on. And I realized, I asked her, wanted me my voice. So I was wanting to find my voice in here in TJ. I think people are just, you know, doing things from nothing. And that really gave me a kind of a courage and, and a kind of a guts to start making my stuff. So this is like my, my art school in city one, the city. So then I found here, I think in TJ is like super great to like start thinking, you know, you don't think about anything that just let's do it, you know? And then the explosiveness of starting something. But I think here, I couldn't quite learn how to tie the last, not how to complete the works. It's hard to get into details because it's so much stuff going on here. And it's like, and Speaker 6: 41:09 You see like half-finished buildings all the time. Like, I don't see that anywhere more than in Taiwan like this, like the, the explosiveness is there to create, but then to finish it. Well, it's like, Speaker 11: 41:22 Yeah, it's a, it's a, that's the beautiful thing about it because it's so much space to do stuff. You know? Speaker 6: 41:29 So because of this feeling of champagne is the feeling that he could easily create things in the corner, but can never quite figure out how to finish them. He decided to move back to Germany where he had spent part of his childhood. He says he felt like the country's long history and its culture, which he remembers as being oriented towards efficiency and getting things done, felt like the necessary next step in his career as an artist, Speaker 3: 41:55 Germany, forever Speaker 11: 41:57 Army Germany is also as of right now, it's super immigrant society. So now it's, you know, it's like a California 20 years ago in some ways. And yet there there's a part of it. And they're like very conscious. They're more green there. You know, it's feels like it's a well, or, you know, society well-functioning society because I, a lot of frictions, a lot of frictions. So these, in some ways there are 10 years ahead of you with save us on your summits. Some ways there, like 10 years ahead of, you know, behind California in just kind of dealing with others, how do you deal with others? So will you always kind of consider it? You want a home base? You always kind of, I mean, just, we see what happens after this. This show was like one of the something that I really wanted to put, make it just, and after here it's like, it's, I'll have to find some new threats for my new future, you know? Speaker 11: 42:50 And then now, like, I mean, you learn in of border, I guess. Just do what you learn from the, doing a transporter life is that there's always so much way of going through the border and you always learn the place here. The point is not to break down the walls, but you just, you just, just, you have to find the back door entry, you know, I think that's why you learn, you know, cause in, in Germany, it's exam. It's so interesting. It's you from where I am, you drive 30 minutes to Holland there. When I was a kid there used to be border, like Levenia here now, not so many like three hours lines, but there was always an Indian. I remember this as a kid and now there's like nothing. And you see the remains of the checkpoint. So the borders come and go, you know, and this one's getting bigger and bigger from the time. I mean, when you, when I was first year, there was like this. Yeah. There was like nothing. I mean, you could still jump a little bit. You now it's gotten more hype, hyper intense. So, but it comes and go. I think so Speaker 6: 44:00 Orders come and go. They do got to remember that you just Speaker 11: 44:03 Have to keep finding ways to, you know, get through it. And don't try to go from the main entry point because it takes too much time and too much and machine, I like it find the back door. Speaker 1: 44:18 And that was transporter artists. Shouldn't be Takeda talking with port of entries, Alan Lilienthal and Kenzie. Morlin about his exhibition on [inaudible] through August 8th, listened to the full episode, which includes an audio tour of his show online at port of entry,, or find port of entry, wherever you listen to podcasts.

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A significant increase in COVID-19 cases has prompted San Diego County public health officials Thursday to renew efforts to get county residents vaccinated from the virus. Plus, a judge in California ruled the state insurance commissioner can order the “insurer of last resort” to offer more options for homeowners in high-risk wildfire areas. Then, Oceanside will soon have its first year-round homeless shelter. Later, Pride celebrations are coming to Escondido for the first time. And KPBS’ Port of Entry Podcast explores how a local artist found his voice in Tijuana.