About the Author

Author Picture

Julia Weis

Julia Weis joined Salud America! and its home base, the Institute for Health Promotion Research at UT Health San Antonio, in September 2020. With a degree in Communication from Trinity University, Julia has previously worked in journalism, marketing, graphic design, and technical writing. She loves biking and hiking in the Central Texas outdoors and is passionate about environmental and social justice issues.


Connect with Julia:
Twitter Link

Articles by Julia Weis

What Biden’s New Immigration Plan Means for Latinos


Biden immigration plan

President Joe Biden has vowed to completely reform how the U.S. handles immigration. In the first two weeks of his presidency, Biden has begun taking action to stop the border wall, family separation, support DACA recipients, reverse the public charge rule, and is planning further legislation to create an easier path to citizenship for immigrants. How does Biden’s immigration reform affect Latino immigrants? Let’s take a look at the different immigration policies Biden has in store. Defunding the U.S. and Mexico Border Wall One of former President Trump’s largest and most controversial campaigns was the U.S./Mexico border wall, which critics opposed for divisiveness and cost. The wall was never complete. In his first day in office, Biden signed an executive order to ...

Read More

Kendra Gage: Teaching Implicit Bias and Anti-Racism in the Classroom


Kendra Gage Implicit Bias

Kendra Gage starts off all her new classes addressing one obvious fact: she’s white. That’s because Gage is a professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) who teaches African American studies, focusing on the Civil Rights Movement and addressing racism in modern America. Gage believes in addressing her whiteness because she wants students to be aware of implicit bias─ stereotypes that affect our understanding and decisions about others beyond our conscious control─in the classroom. She feels it’s her role as an educator to highlight her own implicit bias and allow students to question their own biases. “My very first lecture in class, I say, ‘This is who I am. I am white.’ I mean, I can't hide behind that, so I do address it,” Gage said. That is ...

Read More

Survey: Despite Pandemic, Many Don’t See Systemic Racism as Barrier



The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted many of the disparities impacting communities of color. Not only has COVID-19 led to a disproportionate number of deaths and severe illness among Latinos, but it has also contributed to financial struggles, homelessness, and students falling behind in school. These disparities are linked with discrimination and impact Latinos throughout their lives, according to a Salud America! research review. But despite the evidence, many Americans don’t see systemic racism as the cause of the inequity. A survey by the RAND Corporation and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) found that only 42% of respondents think that systemic racism is one of the main reasons people of color face health inequities. The majority does not believe or feel neutral ...

Read More

Latinos Vaccinated for COVID-19 at Far Lower Rates than White People


COVID vaccine Latinos

As the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines continue to be distributed across the country, several states are beginning to report the demographic makeup of their vaccine distribution numbers. Unfortunately, Latinos make up a very low percentage of those getting a vaccine, despite being disproportionately hurt by COVID-19. Let’s take a look at the data. UPDATE 2/22/21: Updated numbers for states and more states added. COVID-19 Vaccination for Latinos by State Only 30 out of 50 states report a racial/ethnic breakdown of their COVID-19 vaccine distribution numbers that specify Hispanics/Latinos, as of Feb. 22, 2021. All states that have reported demographics of vaccine distribution show that Latinos are getting vaccinated at a much lower rate. Even in states ...

Read More

Study: Latino, Black Physicians Experience Racial Discrimination and Bias from Patients



More than 40% of Latino and Black resident physicians experience racial discrimination and bias from the patients they serve, according to a study published in JAMA Network Open. The experiences range from explicit racial epithets to a patient’s refusal of care. And on top of that, most physicians (84%) do not report the incidents to their leadership. “To address the issue of biased patient behavior, interventions are needed at the institutional and interpersonal levels,” according to researchers Shalila de Bourmont, Arun Burra, Sarah Nouri, et al. Racial discrimination and implicit bias must be addressed. What the JAMA Study Showed about Bias and Discrimination The study conducted by de Bourmont, Burra, Nouri et al. surveyed 232 internal medicine residents from three ...

Read More

Debunking the Myths and Misinformation on COVID-19


Woman with face mask getting vaccinated, coronavirus, covid-19 and vaccination concept covid-19 coronavirus

As we fight the COVID-19 pandemic, we have to make sure we’ve got all the right facts. Public health experts are seeing a lot of misinformation about COVID-19 spread on social media. Whether conspiracy theories or jokes about side effects, experts are concerned about the implications it could have. Misinformation could especially hurt Latinos, who are being disproportionately hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic and have shown hesitancy about receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. “It’s the repetition [of misinformation] that worries me,” said Eveyln Pérez-Verdía, a strategist who tracks Spanish disinformation, according to NBC News. "People are seeing this constantly.” What is some of the misinformation being spread about COVID-19? Let’s check the myths and facts. What are ...

Read More

Cheryl Aguilar: Providing Mental Health Support to Families with Immigration Trauma



Immigration is difficult and often traumatic. People who immigrate to the U.S. often face a dangerous journey only to be met with aggression and xenophobia at the border. It can lead to loss of hope, anxiety, depression, and even suicide. Cheryl Aguilar wants to help families experiencing the trauma of immigration and adjusting to new life in the U.S. Aguilar immigrated from Honduras as a teenager, an experience that helped guide her to give back to immigrant communities. Aguilar is a clinical social worker and founding director and therapist at the Hope Center for Wellness. “As a therapist, one of the things that I do is help individuals, families, and communities heal from whatever distress, trauma, or experiences they might have encountered. I believe in holistic healing, ...

Read More

#SaludTues Tweetchat 1/19: What Can We Do to Stop Cervical Cancer?



January is Cervical Health Awareness Month. Each year, more than 13,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer in the United States. This cancer is hurting communities of color, with Latinas being at a high risk of being diagnosed. But cervical cancer is preventable. Stopping cervical cancer for all communities means education about the causes, prevention, and treatment of HPV and cervical cancer. Join #SaludTues on Jan. 19, 2021, at 1:00 PM EST to tweet about what we can do to stop cervical cancer. WHAT: #SaludTues Tweetchat: “What Can We Do to Stop Cervical Cancer?” DATE: Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2020 TIME: 1:00-2:00 p.m. EST (10:00-11:00 p.m. PST) WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues HOST: @SaludAmerica CO-HOSTS: Cervivor (@IamCervivor), ...

Read More

President-Elect Joe Biden’s Cabinet Boasts Diversity, Minority Representation


biden diverse cabinet

When Joe Biden takes the presidential office on Jan. 20, 2021, he’ll bring cabinet members from a variety of backgrounds and walks of life. Biden’s cabinet is the most diverse presidential cabinet in history. There are more people of color and women than any previous cabinet and also has LGBTQ and Native American representation. Why does this matter? Having diverse government leaders can lead to more inclusive and equitable policies. Let’s take a look at who is joining Biden’s diverse cabinet. Who are the Latinos in Biden’s Cabinet? Biden will have several Latinos in cabinet positions, bringing representation to an area in government that has historically been predominately white. Some of the Latino politicians joining Biden’s cabinet are Alejandro ...

Read More