Ignored Until Death is a research work on indigenous Mexican migrant women who died in the United States because of Covid-19, during the first part of the pandemic. In the absence of data, the journalists who met to develop this work, devised mechanisms that would allow us to build the data.
The work was taken up by at least a dozen media and blogs in Mexico, including such important media as the Proceso Magazine, Pie de Página, The Observer, Periodismo y Verificador del Discurso Público, Libertarium, Aristegui Noiticias, La truth de Juárez, among others.
To find the number of indigenous migrant women of Mexican origin who died in Mexico, we submitted nearly a thousand requests for information to both Mexican and North American authorities and the more than 50 Mexican consulates in the United States, as well as to indigenous Mexican municipalities. The control of the information obtained was necessary for which we built databases, rigorously controlling each data and detail provided. Then we cross-checked the data between responses from federal, municipal, and state authorities. We also went to the communities and contacted families to confirm the data. The results allowed us to map the data with precision, on the original communities of the victims by Covid-19 (indigenous women), as their place of death in the United States.
What was the hardest part of this project?
The most difficult part of the project was the control of the information. Do not get lost in a sea of responses obtained through a thousand requests for information submitted. Giving order and consistency to the data and bringing them together logically in excel databases was the most complicated and difficult. The result was a huge database with name (in some cases), place, age and sex, of the people who died in the United States from Covid in the United States. From there we disaggregate women, their origin, and construct the statistics we were looking for. This also made it possible to map both his place of origin and the place of death.
What can others learn from this project?
That data control by digit is essential, but looking for the faces behind the numbers may be the most important thing, because behind each number there may be a life.