Marcelo Montecinos/The Santiago Times Staff
While those that have lined up at the Civil Registry to get their codes, in order to be eligible for the latest help by government during this pandemic, will hopefully be getting food boxes this coming weekend, many that haven’t registered, for whatever reason, will not get anything.
They are the forgotten: The ones that have to go out and work every day, defying getting a ticket for being outdoors during the shut-down, contracting the Sars-CoV-2 virus, and now maybe experiencing another tremor, or an earthquake, to boot! There was a 4.8 tremor last Thursday in San Bernardo, at 6:31 p.m.
People like Sandy don’t have a choice if they want to eat and pay their bills. Many protests have taken place in Santiago in the last few days by people just like her. She sells nuts on the streets of La Cisterna, along with the help of her daughters, aged 9 and 5.
Joaquin makes a meager living on the streets of La Cisterna helping people park their cars. The amount of cars on the streets now are few, nothing compared to pre-Covid-19 times. He says getting a ticket, or catching the virus are secondary to him now. The $10 dollars he makes daily are necessary to feed his 4 children, wife and mother awaiting him at home.
He says the police leave him alone. He also states that the $10 he makes nowadays are about the same as what he was making before the pandemic started since people feel bad for him and give generously. He doesn’t know what he would be doing otherwise if he wasn’t working at this, “probably stealing or mugging,” he adds with a laugh.
There are many more out there like Joaquin and Sandy making the most of this crisis. They have no choice.