Oral Histories

Interview of Anabel Anon

Interviewed for the UCLA Center for the Study of Women’s Chemical Entanglements: Oral Histories of Environmental Illness series. Member of California Domestic Worker’s Alliance and Grupo Almas, a women’s collective in Santa Rosa, California.
Series:
Chemical Entanglements: Oral Histories of Environmental Illness
Topic:
Environmental Illness
Social Movements
Biographical Note:
Interviewed for the UCLA Center for the Study of Women’s Chemical Entanglements: Oral Histories of Environmental Illness series. Member of California Domestic Worker’s Alliance and Grupo Almas, a women’s collective in Santa Rosa, California.
Interviewer:
LeGresley, Megan and Encinas, Abraham
Interviewee:
Anon, Anabel
Persons Present:
Session One: Anon and LeGresley Session Two: Anon and Encinas
Place Conducted:
Each interview was conducted using the Zoom video conferencing platform
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library’s Center for Oral History Research.
Interviewer Background and Preparation:
Session 1: This interview was conducted by Megan LeGresley, an undergraduate student researcher, for the Center for the Study of Women, major in Economics and Political Science. She was a member of the 2018-2019 Chemical Entanglements Undergraduate Student Group. and Session 2: This interview was conducted by Abraham Encinas, a graduate student researcher, for the Center for the Study of Women, and PhD student in English, UCLA. Abraham’s dissertation focuses on novels of dictatorship in 20th century Latinx and Asian American literature.
Processing of Interview:
Each interviewer prepared for the interview by reading a pre-interview questionnaire completed by the narrator.
Length:
1.25 hrs
Language:
Spanish
Copyright:
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
Audio:
Series Statement:
Chemical Entanglements: Oral Histories of Environmental Illness is a collection of interviews with over seventy individuals living in the U.S. and Canada whose family history, occupation, art practice, or activism have brought them into direct contact with illness experience and disability related to chronic, low-dose exposure to toxicant chemicals. The procurement of this collection (from March 2019 through September 2020) was sponsored by the UCLA Center for the Study of Women under the directorship of Rachel C. Lee, with interviews conducted by six undergraduates, five graduate students, two career staff, and two faculty members at CSW.
Note:
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Introducción--Tiene más de tres años con la Coalición y se involucró más en febrero--Siente que a la gente no le importan sus derechos como mujeres y hombres--Se identifica como mexicana y una mujer hispana de la clase media--Papá trabaja en agricultura en México--Humilde casa de adobe cuando era niña--Recuerda olores frescos y la comida que su mamá cocinaba--Buena experiencia en la escuela con amigos y con sus buenas notas--Emigra a los Estados Unidos cuando tiene quince años--Trabaja primero cuidando niños--Cómo le afectan los químicos especialmente después de muchos años como limpiadora de casas--Se siente débil y tiene falta de respiración--Ambas las trabajadoras y las patronas prefieren los productos verdes--Toma Claritin y Tylenol para sus síntomas--Describe limpiando casas que se han quemado--Esposo tiene cáncer en los ganglios linfáticos--Poco trabajo durante la pandemia--Espera que los empleadores y las trabajadoras se sientan seguros porque los impactos económicos son problemáticos particularmente para ellos quienes no tienen documentos y no pueden recibir apoyo federal o estatal--También reacciona al perfume--Conclusión
Introduction--Has worked more than three years with the Coalition and became more involved in February--Feels people do not value their rights as women and men--Identifies as a middle-class Hispanic woman from Mexico--Father has always worked in agriculture in Mexico--Grows up in a humble adobe house--Remembers fresh smells and food her mother cooked--Good experience in school with her friends; earned good grades--Immigrates to the United States when she is fifteen years old--First works in childcare--Describes how chemicals affect them especially after many years of cleaning houses--Feels weak and has difficulty breathing--Both workers and employers prefer green products--Takes Claritin and Tylenol for her symptoms--Describes cleaning burned-out houses--Husband has lymphatic cancer--Little work during the pandemic--Hopes employers and workers feel safe because the economic impacts are problematic particularly for those who are undocumented and who therefore cannot receive federal or state aid--Also reacts to perfume--Conclusion
Introduction--Born in Michoacán and immigrates to the US when she is fifteen years old--works for companies that use strong chemicals without protections--Lives in Santa Rosa where her husband works in grape farming (wine making)--Wants to share her story of cleaning burned-out hospitals because of 2017 fires in Sonoma County, again without adequate protection--Because of the Santa Rosa fires, many people don’t have work, so they answer ads on Facebook to clean damaged buildings--Undocumented individuals are affected most--They don’t have unemployment and also do not have health insurance for when they develop illnesses--Her symptoms include eye and throat irritation--Can’t use products like Clarasol and perfume, so she uses soap and vinegar with lemon--Doesn’t pay for an expensive medicine for her allergies; she just takes Claritin instead--Doesn’t work too many hours in the grape fields because of the presence of agricultural chemicals--Takes a lot of precautions for her health, such as keeping a fresh home--Fights with ALMAS, the Women’s Collective, the Graton Day Labor Center, and the Coalition for laws like SB-1257--Motivated by the equality of all groups, regardless of gender, race, language, age, etc.--Attends a large meeting of workers in Las Vegas--Believes the lack of medicine has a greater effect than her gender on her health--Knows we need national immigration reform, and also that their organization needs to support them in the manner of providing economic incentives--Logistics and conclusion
Introducción--Nace en Michoacán y emigra a los Estados Unidos cuando tiene quince años--Trabaja por compañías que usan químicos fuertes sin protecciones--Vive en Santa Rosa donde su esposo trabaja en la agricultura de uvas--Quiere compartir su historia de limpiando hospitales quemados por los incendios de 2017 en el condado de Sonoma, de nuevo sin protección adecuada--Muchas personas no tenían trabajos por los incendios, así que contestan avisos en Facebook para limpiar--Las personas sin papeles son las más afectadas--No tienen desempleo y también no tienen seguro médico cuando desarrollan enfermedades--Sus síntomas incluyen irritación de ojos y de garganta--No puede usar productos como Clarasol o perfumes, así que usa jabón y vinagre con limón--No paga por una medicina cara para sus alergias, solamente toma Claritin--No trabaja por demasiadas horas en los campos por los químicos que están en las uvas--Toma mucho en cuenta para su salud; por ejemplo, mantiene una casa fresca--Lucha con ALMAS, la Colectiva de Mujeres, el Centro Laboral de Graton, y la Coalición de Trabajadores para leyes como la SB-1257--Es motivada por la igualdad de los grupos; no importa el sexo, el color, el idioma, la edad, etcétera--Asiste una reunión de muchas trabajadoras en Las Vegas--Cree que la falta de medicamento tiene un efecto más grande en su salud que su género--Sabe que necesitamos una reforma migratoria nacional y también que su organización les apoye en una manera con incentivos económicos--Logísticas y conclusión