A-Z

Miura

Age at interview: 36
Brief Outline:

Gender: Female
Ethnicity: Black African
Background: Miura is 36 years old and is Black African. She is a support worker for people with learning disabilities. Miura caught Covid in August 2020. She took paracetamol to help with her symptoms, but she felt like it did not help her condition at all.

More about me...

Miura works in the community with people with learning disabilities. When the pandemic first started she was briefed about how to cope with Covid when and if it came to the UK. At first, her team were doing really well to avoid Covid, but it eventually came into her practice around August 2020.
 
When Covid came into Miura’s practice she was instructed to take a Covid test. However, she had a gut feeling that she was infected because she had a headache, was achy, and generally did not feel right. She was right as she did indeed have Covid. Miura was most worried about living alone with Covid and what would happen if her symptoms got worse.
 
Miura took paracetamol when she had Covid although she felt it was not doing anything.  During this time she had her friends drop off shopping outside her door. She talked about how risk from Covid was worse for care workers and for ethnic minorities, and there were not enough protections in place for them.

 

 

Miura felt nervous that she might infect the people in her care.

Miura felt nervous that she might infect the people in her care.

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You don’t know with our service users because also like they were isolated. All of them were in their shielding and we are the only person who go in and out of the service. And we are the one who brought Covid. It’s not him. They did not leave, you know. You feel that sense of guilt as well [sighs]. Ahh dear.

 

Miura saw similarities between the discrimination faced by older women and migrants in access to good jobs.

Miura saw similarities between the discrimination faced by older women and migrants in access to good jobs.

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In my service, the majority of my colleagues are Scottish. The majority. But they are Scottish and a middle age, okay. Okay, maybe people who did not have access to a higher education. People who are not from a higher class of course they are from a low income class and majority of them you can see that they are from the area [place names] and in [City] like East End. None of them are from West End [laughs]. Or you know like, I don’t know I think there is a relationship you know between the job that they do and their class let’s say like in the society and their age as well because majority of them were like 40 and above. And then, no I would say majority is 50 and above. Yeah 50 and above and now doing this job you know. And they have been doing it for life like they are going to retire in this job and I feel like the youngest person in there. But yeah it’s either people like that in this Scottish category or migrant people.

 

Miura suspected Covid when her whole body was sore in a different way than she was used to with flu.

Miura suspected Covid when her whole body was sore in a different way than she was used to with flu.

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By the time I was in my car driving to my test centre I knew that I had Covid already. My whole body was really sore. I started with headache [laughs]. I know, you know it was weird because I never felt in such a way you know. I am a person who suffers a lot from flu but that was totally different from flu.

 

Miura used a natural remedy from her home country that included garlic, ginger and lime.

Miura used a natural remedy from her home country that included garlic, ginger and lime.

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And so for like in my home country they use a lot of plant based, you know, natural remedies and some doctors use that as well, you know kind of natural medicine, so like garlic, lime… ginger. That also, that’s also helpful like for your lung and for your, just to protect you against the virus itself as well to help you with the things.

 

Miura experienced anxiety and depression due to Covid.

Miura experienced anxiety and depression due to Covid.

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So you see the understanding was a lot of mixed feeling to be honest right. I think Covid give people depression [Laughs]. It’s that serious they should help others as well. I think there is a link between depression, anxiety and what this disease is to be honest.

 

Miura describes negative responses to her social media post about taking the vaccine.

Miura describes negative responses to her social media post about taking the vaccine.

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When I took it I made sure I put it in social media. Just so you know to raise more awareness, so people maybe are more engaged to take it. I don’t know? But a lot of people in my community said, “Why did you take this? Based on what?” I wouldn’t take this,” dah, dah, dah, dah. So, there is a lot of resistance.

 

Miura was not surprised that Black women like her were facing more risk of Covid because she ‘already knew’, from personal experience, how racism forced them into risky work.

Miura was not surprised that Black women like her were facing more risk of Covid because she ‘already knew’, from personal experience, how racism forced them into risky work.

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The only reason I see for me getting the Covid was because of my job.
 
Your occupation, yeah.
 
Yeah and you know that majority of black people although they might have a high education level, of academic skills they are doing a job that doesn’t necessarily really reflect their skill and majority of those jobs are carers. You know, or cleaner and these were key jobs. These jobs would not stop during pandemic so they had to go to their work, they had no other option. I couldn’t say ok, I am not going to my work, for who, who would pay for my meal? You know. I had to go. And a lot of black and brown people you know are in that sort of category and obviously they will be more affected like by the pandemic because they don’t have other option, they need to continue with their work so that’s just another facet of inequality But this just show you how unequal you know like some of the groups are compared to others I would say.
 
And when that news came out, did it hit you at a personal level? Did it make you worry for yourself or was it, was it again mainly worrying for the community, you know for the black community?
 
I would say both, I would say both but in some extent I am already used to our inequality like I know about it. I don’t even have to hear you know some other people saying, oh dah, dah, dah, dah because it’s something I know already. So it’s not like dramatically taken like, because I know that people are like me are disproportionally, you know like compared to other groups so that doesn’t really, you know raise any trigger. But obviously I was worried about the whole community and now people as well as about myself too although I say ok, I think I will survive. I think it is not my time yet to die [laughs].
 
Yeah.
 
Yeah, so it’s sad.

 

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