Majority Of Minorities Believe Texas Opened Too Fast, Says New Survey

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The balance between opening back up the economy and shutting down the spread of COVID-19 has been a moving target and according to a new poll, many believe the state of Texas missed the mark.

The Texas Hispanic Policy Foundation surveyed 846 registered voters.

44% thought the state opened up too quickly, compared to 28% who thought it opened at the right pace and another 28% who thought it opened too slowly.

The breakdown of the numbers by race reveals white voters were nearly evenly split into thirds on the matter, while 61% of Blacks and 55% of Hispanics believe the state opened too quickly.

"It showed that Latinos were more concerned with the health of their family and of their neighbors and felt that to get a hold of the economy, you have to get a hold of the virus first," said Texas Hispanic Policy Foundation board member and former state senator Leticia Van de Putte.

Decision-makers have reported before that Blacks and Latinos are disproportionately affected by the coronavirus.

Many believe it's because they make up a large portion of the essential workforce among other cultural factors.

"When you look at the diversity of the African American and Latino community, you see several factors and we have talked about that before, like the high density, the large number of essential workers, the multi-generational households, the lower-income and of course, the lack of access to healthcare," said Dallas County Commissioner Dr. Elba Garcia.

The survey also found 12.3% of white voters said they or a relative had been affected by COVID-19, but the rate for Blacks was 23.4% and 29.4% for Hispanics.

Opinions among minorities on whether Texas opened too quickly may not come as a surprise, but those behind the survey hope that it offers a perspective that may lead to action.

"They are very worried about health. They are very worried about exposure and they don't mind waiting another two weeks if it means protecting 'abuelo or abuela,' the grandparents," said Van de Putte.

*Map locations are approximate, central locations for the city and are not meant to indicate where actual infected people live.

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