A pandemic that paralyzed the world and caused chaos and pain. The approval of a long-awaited measure that will benefit thousands of immigrants. Social demonstrations not seen in decades. A historic presidential election.
2020 was an eventful year, to say the least. And the DC area experienced many unforgettable and unprecedented moments.
These are some of the local stories that captivated TELEMUNDO 44 viewers and readers this year.
The first cases of COVID-19 in the area
Three people in Maryland have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, the first positive cases in the Washington, DC area.
In the first days of March, the first three cases of COVID-19 were detected in the region. A woman in her 50s, and a married couple in her 70s, all residents of Montgomery County in Maryland, fell ill after a cruise trip in Egypt, authorities announced on March 5. Two days later, it was announced that a Marine in Fort Belvoir, Virginia, tested positive for COVID-19, as well as confirmed the first two cases in DC: a rector of a church and an international visitor to the city.
In a matter of 10 days, coronavirus infections in the region rose from two to almost 150.
The first orders to stay home for the pandemic
The mayor made the announcement on Wednesday.
DC, Maryland and Virginia issued stay-at-home orders on March 30, instructing residents to only leave their residences for essential reasons, such as buying food or seeking medical care, radically altering the operations of restaurants, retailers, gyms, hair salons, schools and childcare centers. The most basic daily activities were affected.
A large number of workers began to work from homes. The students entered virtual learning. Museums, zoos, libraries and courts closed.
When the first orders were issued, some 2,834 people had been diagnosed with COVID-19 and 51 had died from complications linked to the virus. By the end of the year, more than 545,000 individuals in the region had contracted the disease and some 10,000 people had died.
Salvadoran father and son die of coronavirus hours apart in Maryland
A Salvadoran family in our area is devastated after having lost two of its members to COVID-19 in a matter of hours.
The coronavirus pandemic has caused deep pain in many families throughout the region. One of the cases that most touched our audience was that of a father and son of Salvadoran origin and Montgomery County residents who died hours apart after testing positive for the coronavirus. José Ricardo Ventura and his son Oscar Antonio Ventura, 35, lived in the same residence with their wives. Everyone in the house was infected.
Oscar suffered from diabetes and was the first to be admitted. Soon after, his father was hospitalized and entered critical condition. They both passed away in early May.
“What hurts the most right now is that we can’t have a funeral for him, just for both of us. What kills us the most on that side, especially in the situation caused by this virus, ”said José Ricardo.
Bukele declares quarantine in El Salvador to avoid coronavirus infections
The first hours of the mandatory residential quarantine ordered by the President of El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, on Saturday night were marked this Sunday by the arrest of 112 people for allegedly violating the provision and for last minute purchases.
The coronavirus pandemic has been experienced around the world and many governments took immediate measures to prevent infections and deaths in their countries. Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele was one of the leaders who took the strictest measures. On March 11, he announced a strict quarantine and banned foreigners from entering the country for a few weeks. “The economic impact pales in comparison with the number of deaths that we could have with a pandemic that neither Italy nor South Korea are prepared to stop,” he said at the time.
Many Salvadorans in the DC area found it difficult to return to their country.
Salvadorans who want to travel to their country are living an odyssey after the announcement of a quarantine for coronavirus by President Nayib Bukele.
Special driver’s licenses approved for undocumented immigrants in Virginia
The Virginia General Assembly this weekend passed legislation that will give special driver’s licenses to undocumented people who reside in the state.
It was a law that thousands had been waiting for – and had been fighting for – for years. In March, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation that allowed undocumented people residing in the state to apply for a special driver’s card beginning January 1, 2021. An estimated 300,000 people will benefit from the measure.
“Now we are going to walk without that fear that if a police officer gets behind us and with that fear that he will stop us,” said Sandra Hernández, one of the residents of the state who will benefit from this law. “We are going to stop us. have that document as to show it (sic) that we are not driving illegally ”.
This was a top priority for Democratic lawmakers, who last year won control of both houses for the first time in two decades.
Protests over the death of George Floyd
For the 10th day, protesters continued on the streets of Washington demanding justice and reforms from the police forces
Thousands of people marched across the country this summer following the death of George Floyd, an African American man, at the hands of police. Floyd passed away after an officer knelt on his neck for more than eight minutes. The event renewed calls for police reform and for racial justice in a nation with historic wounds over the treatment of minorities by the police.
One of the cities where the most massive – and sometimes tense – demonstrations were registered was Washington, DC The vast majority of the protests were peaceful, but on occasion, some present set fires and vandalized buildings and vehicles. Law enforcement officials were accused of attacking the protesters with pepper spray and tear gas. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced a multi-night curfew and members of the DC National Guard were deployed, along with the US Park Police, the Federal Police and the Metro Police Department.
Afro-Latinos spoke with TELEMUNDO 44 about the importance of the current movement against racism and police brutality in the United States – and why it should reach Latin America.
Afro-Latino activists throughout the metropolitan region express why the anti-racism and anti-police brutality movement is so important in the United States and Latin America.
Washington football team changes name
Washington’s NFL team announced Monday that it will drop the “Redskins” name, which means “redskins,” and the logo, after decades of pressure. Experts and rights advocates have described the name as a “dictionary-defined racist insult.”
The Washington football team announced in July that it was dropping its old name, an epithet viewed by experts and rights advocates as racist and offensive toward Native Americans.
For decades, calls were made for the team to modify what was considered one of the most polarizing names in North American professional sports. The replacement came amid demonstrations in favor of racial justice in the United States.
The squad began a “comprehensive review” of the name on July 3 with the support of the NFL. The process began after major sponsors such as FedEx, Nike, PepsiCo and Bank of America asked the team to change its name.
Biden and Harris win the presidential election
After more than three tense days of a vote count that kept the US (and the world) on edge, former Vice President Joe Biden was announced as the projected winner of the state of Pennsylvania, a victory that gave him enough votes in the Electoral College to reach the presidency of the United States The loser, the current President Donald Trump, denied the results and claimed, without grounds, that an alleged electoral fraud had been committed against him.
Within seconds of the announcement of the victory of the formula by Biden and Senator Kamala Harris, Washington DC turned into a party. Thousands took to the streets of the capital to celebrate, with horns, cheers, songs and dances.
“You’re fired”: Biden supporters in DC celebrate his triumph over Trump
Harris made history by becoming the first black woman and the first person of South Asian descent to be elected as vice president.
That night, the couple headed to the nation. In his speech, Biden called for integration and leaving behind the polarization and partisan hatred of recent years in order to advance as a nation.
“I am proud to be a Democrat, but I will rule like an American president. I will work just as hard for those who did not vote for me as I will work for those who did. Let this dark age of demonization in [Estados Unidos] end here and now, ”he said.
DHS announces extension of TPS until October 2021
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will issue a nine-month extension of Temporary Protected Status benefits, which protects hundreds of thousands of immigrants, according to a document on the agency’s website.
In early December, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a nine-month extension of Temporary Protected Status benefits, which protects tens of thousands of immigrants in our region. The amparo originally expired on January 4, after President Donald Trump ended the program in 2018. The DHS decision gave a respite to many who feared what might happen once the permits expired.
The automatic extension until October 4, 2021 it favors immigrants from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, Sudan, Honduras and Nepal. Incoming President Joe Biden has said that immediate restoration of the program is one of his immigration priorities, and many beneficiaries hope the new administration will present them with a path to permanent residence.
Police: Man kills his mother in Herndon
One case that shocked TELEMUNDO 44’s audience this year was the murder of a Hispanic mother by her son in Herndon, Virginia. The event was recorded on February 22. Eric Turcios, 28, was accused of having shot and killed his mother, Blanca Turcios, 53. The man allegedly confessed to the matricide to his girlfriend and a friend, according to documents from the authorities, and allegedly also made statements expressing “his desire to murder other members of his family.”
It was the first recorded homicide in Fairfax County for the year.
Families mourn Salvadoran teens killed in DC
Two teenagers were killed and a woman injured in a shooting Saturday night in northwest Washington, authorities said.
Despite the pandemic, it has been the most violent year in Washington in more than 15 years. Two of the victims of the homicides in the capital were two Salvadoran minors who died in a shooting in the Brightwood neighborhood in February.
Wilfredo Torres, 17, and Jaime Zelaya, 16, were returning to an apartment complex on 13th Street NW when a man armed with a rifle followed them and opened fire on them, according to authorities. Zelaya’s mother, Blanca, was also injured in the incident. The young men had been best friends since they were children, according to close associates.
More than 197 people have lost their lives in homicides in the District in 2020, according to police data.