In a society where “They’re stealing our jobs”, I set out to document what one of these “stolen” jobs looks like at a factory where 75%-80% of the employees are Hispanic. This job requires employees to work six days a week from 3 p.m. to 3 a.m. During this 12-hour sanitation shift, employees are working in cold and wet environments; taking apart, cleaning, and reassembling large pieces of equipment.
Sanitation Worker- Stolen Job
A collection of street jobs in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Not every Latino in the U.S. is Mexican, brown, a maid, or illegal. Latinos in America are often pushed into very specific and overly generalized stereotypes. I myself have had my identity questioned because of these stereotypes. I’ve been asked if my dad is Mexican (which he is not), and I have been asked why I am white with the last name García.
Because of these encounters, I chose to photograph Latinos who break one (or all) of these common stereotypes who have experienced something similar to me. Whether it be judgements or assumptions directed towards them, the lack of understanding is prevalent. They have diverse jobs, and their heritage is not all from one country, they are all individuals with qualities that are unique. With the words impairing your view of these portraits, scroll to the next photo, look past the stereotypes and examine the diversity these Latinos possess.
Look Past the Stereotype
With the current political situation in the U.S. there is more unsteadiness towards illegal immigrants than ever before. In general, the reason that so many Latinos need to move to the U.S. is to make a better life for themselves and their families. I traveled to Mexico to show what living conditions urge people to risk everything to cross the border illegally when their efforts to come legally are denied. I chose to photograph a man who is only able to dig through trash for a living, worn down homes etc. The lifestyles shown in this photo is far too common in all Latin American countries.
When my dad was 18 he traveled from Guatemala and crossed the border into the U.S. to make a better life for his family. I look back on the days when my dad was illegal and am reminded that I never had to live with the fear of my dad being taken away from me because of the country he was born in. The news stories about ICE police deporting parents and tearing families apart hit home for me. This photo series represents the way I feel towards ripping families apart and the building of “The Wall” to keep them apart.