The “essential workers” tasked with keeping America afloat during the coronavirus pandemic are risking their lives daily. Now the healthcare workers, grocery store workers and everyday people we depend on are telling their own stories on the cover of Time magazine this week.
The latest edition of Time has five different covers – each featuring a worker on the front lines of the fight against coronavirus: paramedics, an anesthetist and a cafeteria worker.
Their stories and many more are presented in print and online, told through photos or videos they have taken of themselves at work or interviews with Time correspondents who have spent shifts with them.
There are stories of a coroner in Albany, Georgia, a small town that has become a coronavirus hotspot. The wife of a bus driver who died protecting his passengers from the virus talks about his illness. And an Asian-American doctor treating coronavirus patients is struggling to be celebrated for his work and stereotyped for his ethnicity.
Media organizations have had to get creative in covering the coronavirus crisis while working remotely. Some journalists, including Lauren del Valle and Miguel Marquez of CNN and Charlotte Alter of Time, have been allowed inside hospitals to cover the crisis from the ground, although their time is limited and they must follow strict security measures.
More often than not, news outlets depend on frontline workers to incorporate them into their routines with self-recorded videos and images. Several of them have already shared snapshots of their days, with the horrors and the small victories, with CNN.