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Ozarks at Large Stories

Coronavirus Spreads in Arkansas's Pacific Islander Community

Richeal Koloje
A 2017 portrait of Richeal and Ansen Koloje, whose family has been tragically impacted by COVID-19.

Pacific Islander communities in the U.S., including more than 10,000 Marshallese in Arkansas, are at higher risk for COVID-19 complications, experts say. Many working poor adult migrants have no access to federal entitlements to pay for treatment. One affected Marshallese family shares their traumatic story. Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, the U.S. Marshallese Consul General, a Pacific Islander physician and an Arkansas legislator weigh in.

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