NEW YORK, July 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Fresh from the breakthrough success of the 20 Seconds or More education and awareness campaign that reached over 100 million people when it launched in spring 2020, Hip Hop Public Health (HHPH) today announced 20 Segundos o Más, a new bi-lingual Spanish and English song and music video PSA featuring a fusion of Latin rhythms and Hip Hop beats delivering important safety information about COVID-19. As summer heats up along with the soaring number of COVID-19 cases within the Latino community, 20 Segundos o Más is designed to encourage and inspire Latinos nationwide to follow the handwashing and other protocols necessary to stop the spread of the deadly disease that disproportionately affects them and other communities of color. Dr. Olajide Williams, Chief of Staff, Department of Neurology, New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center, and Doug E. Fresh are the Co-Founders of HHPH and are spearheading the initiative with HHPH Executive Director and CEO, Lori Rose Benson. Philanthropic support for the initiative has been provided by the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation and the Organization for Latino Achievement (OLA), an employee resource group at Bristol Myers Squibb.
The focal point of 20 Segundos o Más is a lively, four-minute music video featuring pioneering rapper and community health advocate, Doug E. Fresh, with more than 30 community influencers and activists who are committed to making a difference through creative expression, civic duty and medicine. These include: Gloria Estefan, Emilio Estefan, Chris Tucker, "King of the Latin Beats" DJ TedSmooth, singers Lisa Lisa, George Lamond, Amara La Negra, MJ Songstress (Melissa Jimenez) of "The Voice," DJ Camilo and Tee, Freedom Williams, Universal Hip Hop Museum Executive Director Rocky Bucano, Bronx Borough President Rubén Díaz Jr., Angie Rose, Love and Hip Hop New York's Jonathan Fernandez, Amaya Murillo, Inspector Reymundo Mundo, Commanding Officer of the NYPD 34th Precinct, Liseth Perez, influencer Jennifer Mercedes, rapper N.O.R.E. (a.k.a. Victor Santiago) of Capone-N-Noreaga, 72 Miles to Go playwright Hilary Bettis and more. 20 Segundos o Más features verses written and performed by a new generation of Latin musical artists. Performing on the track are Dose, Fabián, Leisley and Toby Love. Their spirited rapping flow blended with perfectly pitched harmonies create an uplifting experience throughout. The entire production features artists and influencers who represent the full depth, breadth and diversity of the Latino diaspora. For artist bios and full list of participants visit www.hhph.org/20SegundosOMas.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics, the percentage of Latinos making up coronavirus cases is almost equal to whites, around 34%, despite Latinos being a significantly smaller portion of the population. In June alone, the cases have nearly tripled.
"While Hispanics represent 18% of the U.S. population, using weighted population distributions, approximately 27% of the deaths from COVID-19 have been Hispanic, and in many counties these disparities will continue to increase due to the explosion in infection rates among this group," says Dr. Olajide Williams. "Hispanic Americans are disproportionately contracting COVID-19, because of comorbid conditions including diabetes, dense multigenerational living conditions that prohibit effective social distancing and quarantine, and disproportionate representation among essential frontline workers such as the meat packing and poultry industries, delivery industry, warehouses, and grocery stores. Moreover, unlike other groups, the fear of getting tested or seeking medical attention due to immigration status is also a contributing factor to COVID-19 disparities afflicting the Hispanic community."
Says Doug E. Fresh, "What you get with 20 Segundos o Más is the ultimate expression of Latin rhythms and Hip-Hop message delivery. DJ TedSmooth and I purposely selected the song's universally loved Latin hook, the big horns backing the classic Willie Colón and Héctor Lavoe masterpiece, La Murga. This catchy hook combined with the information in the song will definitely get people to dance and hopefully adhere to our message of hope, vitality and taking care of themselves and each other. Once again, Hip Hop Public Health is bringing together art, science and social media innovation to help fight the COVID-19 health pandemia."
With roots in the Dominican Republic and a music career that spans decades, DJ TedSmooth (Teddy Rafael Mendez) adds, "It was an honor to collaborate with Hip Hop Public Health and my old friend Doug E. Fresh on this track for mi gente. Latino roots and culture run deep, and to have legends like Lisa Lisa, DJ Camilo and Greg Lamond with some of the new voices out here coming together to protect our people against the coronavirus is an incredibly meaningful experience. I know we can make a difference together."
In addition to the song and video, HHPH has created multiple opportunities for the public to get involved in the 20 Segundos o Más movement. Throughout the summer, HHPH will host a series of virtual viewing parties in key cities and communities affected most, including New York, Miami, Houston and Puerto Rico. These will be held in conjunction with a variety of cultural and professional organizations.
"Since our founding 16 years ago, Hip Hop Public Health has been committed to creating culturally responsive content backed by science and research to affect change and to engender positive health behaviors amongst communities that have long been overlooked or not adequately serviced," says Lori Rose Benson, Executive Director and CEO. "In the face of the coronavirus pandemic, we produced the song 20 Seconds or More in response to messaging failures governing this crisis. Now, with the Latino community so devastatingly affected, we are launching 20 Segundos o Más with the goal of inspiring many millions of Spanish-speaking and bilingual people to join this movement and help stop the spread."
While the campaign is focusing on communities in the U.S. most impacted by COVID-19, HHPH is also conducting outreach and sharing the 20 Segundos o Más video and education campaign components in communities across Latin America, including Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Colombia and Peru, among others.
The 20 Segundos o Más video was produced by IDEKO, a New York-based experiential production agency. To learn more, please visit www.hhph.org and follow HHPH on social at @hhphorg #20SegundosOMas.
About Hip Hop Public Health
Hip Hop Public Health (HHPH) is an internationally recognized organization that creates and implements multimedia public health and education interventions designed to improve health literacy, inspire behavior change and promote health equity. Based in New York City, HHPH was founded in Harlem in 2004 with the mission to empower youth and families around the country – and the globe— with the knowledge and skills to make healthier choices, reducing preventable health conditions. Through a research-driven developmental process created by Columbia University Neurologist Dr. Olajide Williams (a.k.a. the "Hip Hop Doc"), Hip Hop Public Health works with socially conscious artists and public health experts to create scalable, highly engaging, culturally relevant music and multimedia "edutainment" tools.
The Hip Hop Public Health team, led by physical education veteran and public health leader Lori Rose Benson, is a collective comprised of not only health and education professionals (including nutritionists, public health researchers, teachers, physicians, behavioral scientists, and a student advisory board), but also proven-successful multi-media professionals and A-list iconic rap stars and pop artists including Doug E. Fresh, Chuck D, DMC of Run DMC, Ashanti, Jordin Sparks, as well children's television writers/producers (formerly of Sesame Street). All HHPH music, videos, comic books, video games and guidance documents are available for free and can be accessed on its online resource repository.
About the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation
The Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation is an independent charity whose mission is to promote health equity and improve the health outcomes of populations disproportionately affected by serious diseases by strengthening healthcare worker capacity, integrating medical care and community supportive services, and mobilizing communities in the fight against disease.
About the Bristol Myers Squibb Organization for Latino Achievement (OLA)
OLA's mission is to increase representation of Latinos at all levels at BMS for a more diverse, inclusive and empowered workforce. OLA drives value and business performance through initiatives focused on Latino talent development and offers business insights to advance patient outcomes.
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SOURCE Hip Hop Public Health