Poor forced to collect Covid corpses for work in Peru
Commissioned by Channel 4 News
WARNING: This video contains material that some viewers may find distressing
Filmmaker Guillermo Galdos followed two Venezuelan migrants in Peru picking up COVID-19 victims in the poorest neighbourhoods of Lima. The two men arrived in the capital to escape the crisis in Venezuela – to do a job that many Peruvians are too scared to do. They tell Guillermo how working this low-wage job helps to make ends meet and how it allows them to send money back home to their families. The men are at the frontline of the accelerating pandemic in Peru. It is gruelling, dangerous work recovering bodies of COVID-19 victims from homes and streets as the country struggles to combat the virus. Most of the bodies they collect are from poor neighbourhoods, where people can’t afford to pay for a burial – and in a country where the public health system is collapsing under the weight of the grim toll.
Watch the full piece here.
Guillermo Galdos is a producer, filmmaker and cameraman who has spent the last twenty years making documentaries and producing exclusive news stories from Latin and South America for a range of international broadcasters, including Channel 4 News. He has covered human rights abuses, the drug trade, immigration and exposed police corruption and the human trafficking industry.
“This piece stood out, providing intimate footage and authentic interviews to weave together two of this year’s major stories. It focused on the disruption and emotional distress caused by COVID-19, but also the worries and struggles of Venezuelan migrants doing a job no one would ever want to do. A breathtakingly up-close account, it takes us to the heart of the suffering and shows the disturbingly mundane way in which death has to be managed.”
News Award Jury