#BlackLivesMatter, Black Doctors' Covid-19 Consortium, DeSean Jackson, DeSean Jackson Foundation, Dr. Ala Stanford, Gayle Jackson and NFL Moms, Mayor Jim Kenney, NFL Foundation, NFL Foundation Social Justice Fund, NFL Players Giving Back, NFLPA, Racial Disparities, SEPTA
On May 25, 2020, DeSean Jackson, of the Philadelphia Eagles, and his charity, the DeSean Jackson Foundation, awarded a $5,000.00 NFL Foundation Players’ Social Justice Fund grant to the Black Doctors’ Covid-19 Consortium “BDCC”. BDCC is Philadelphia’s first mobile Covid testing site which was launched by Dr. Ala Stanford using her personal assets, a small grant from the CARES Act and a Go Fund Me Page.
DeSean Jackson states that health professionals have rightly called racism a public health crisis and the Corona Virus pandemic has emerged as perhaps the most telling example of the impact disparities in healthcare in our nation’s history. While more than 138,000 people in the United States have died from from COVID-19 roughly 18% of them are Black, though only 13% of Americans are Black. Furthermore, in Philadelphia, Black people are disproportionately affected by the pandemic and have accounted for half of the 23,951 positive cases of COVID-19 and more than half of the 1,433 people who have died from the virus as of June 10th, while the city’s Black residents make up about 44% of the population. Yet, the city has failed to focus on serving the crucial for testing in the Black community and many Black residents face barriers to accessing the city’s testing sites. Therefore, DeSean Jackson deemed Dr. Ala Stanford’s Black Doctors’ Covid-19 Consortium a worthy recipient of the prestigious NFL Foundation Social Justice Players’ Fund grant for her social justice and humanitarian efforts.
To date, Stanford and her Black Doctors’ Covid-19 Consortium have tested more than 5,000 residents at 22 triage-mobile testing events in partnership with Philadelphia’s Black churches. Roughly 96% of those tested are Black, Stanford said. “This whole enterprise came from a life of being Black in America and having to wait, of people telling you, “Be patient, don’t worry, help is coming. “I was tired of waiting for someone to save us.” Stanford said it costs roughly $25,000 a day to test between 250 and 300 people and with no vaccine available for COVID-19 in the foreseeable future it is imperative that the city provide funding to sustain BDCC because #BlackLivesMatter.
Gayle Jackson, President, DeSean Jackson Foundation has been advocating for additional support for BCDD. Gayle states that Dr. Stanford’s business model consists of the free COVID-19 testing, outreach to marginalized communities; and, a concierge-after care and wrap around service. This meets a critical gap in services because the vulnerable population BCDD serves needs assistance when a positive diagnosis is received; and, access to healthcare and resources for those afflicted, their loved ones and support for the caregivers. Mrs. Jackson immediately reached out to Julie Hirsey, Director of Community Affairs, Philadelphia Eagles, when Gayle learned that a bid BCDD had submitted to the City of Philadelphia for $6.9 million in funding for testing from the Center of Disease Control and Prevention to expands its operations and perform contact tracing was declined. [Philadelphia Eagles’ also have a Social Justice Fund.]
DeSean Jackson said the issue of the rejection of the Black Doctors’ Covid-19 Consortium bid raised his awareness and social consciousness to the City of Philadelphia’s longer-term failure to develop and cultivate an effective W/MBE system. [Women and Minority Business Enterprises]. For instance, in the 2019 fiscal year, business enterprises owned by people of color were only awarded 36% of the city’s contracts, amounting roughly $254 million, according to the city’s Office Economic Opportunity 2019 report. He advocated behind the scenes for a reversal of the city’s decision.
Status To Date:
On, June 9, 2020, Jim Kenney, Philadelphia Mayor, Thomas Farley, Health Commissioner; and, members of the City of Philadelphia City Council announced the commitment to provide funding to the Black Doctors’ Covid-19 Consortium during a news conference at Enon Baptist Tabernacle Church where BDCC was providing free Corona Virus testing. The $1.3 million city contract will last six months with the potential to continue the partnership.
On June 11, 2020, Dr. Stanford and the Black Doctors’ Covid-19 Consortium entered into a partnership with SEPTA, the 6th largest transportation system in the United States, to provide free COVID-19 testing at four transit stations, in Philadelphia. The partnership comes at a critical moment for SEPTA. The 9,500-strong workforce lost seven colleagues to the Corona Virus; and, nearly 300 employees have tested positive for the virus. While 60% of those afflicted have returned to work and new safety measures are in place, the region is in the midst of a re-opening that will increase risk for SEPTA employees.
For More Information About:
DeSean Jackson Foundation: Joie Adams, firstname.lastname@example.org
National Football League Foundation: Please visit – https://www.nflfoundation.org
Black Doctors’ Covid-19 Consortium: