Campaign promotes ‘Heartshakes’ as safer alternative to fist, elbow bumps

SA Hispanic Chamber campaign targets Latino abrazo tradition

SA Hispanic Chamber campaign targets Latino abrazo tradition

SAN ANTONIO – To help avoid spreading Covid-19, the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has launched its "Heartshakes" campaign.

“Our culture is very much a very loving culture, a very caring culture,” said Dr. Erika Gonzalez, a physician and the 2020 chair of the Hispanic Chamber. “We like to say ‘hi’ with hugs and kisses.”

Yet those traditional "besos" and "abrazos" these days, she said "puts the Latino community at higher risk than other communities."

As a safer alternative, Gonzalez said there's the "heartshake," simply tapping the heart twice with the right hand.

Gonzalez said that way people can maintain their social distancing.

“It comes from the heart,” she said. “We’re saying ‘hi’ even though I can’t touch you or hug you right now, I still want you to know I care.”

The San Antonio Hispanic Chamber is posting bilingual public service announcements through various means, including social media.

"The more people we can reach, it would be great. We'd love it if this became something viral that goes beyond San Antonio," Gonzalez said.

She said more PSA’s are in the works now promoting heartshakes.

"We're getting different community leaders to kind of demonstrate what that would look like," Gonzalez said.

She said it would still convey, "Hola con corazon. How are you doing?"

The Hispanic Chamber also is hosting a virtual town hall at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

To register for the event, click here.

A townhall hosted by the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce will focus on the "Say Hello with a Heartshake, Con Corazon," campaign to prevent fist pumps and elbow pumps. (KSAT)

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March.


About the Authors:

Jessie Degollado has been with KSAT since 1984. She is a general assignments reporter who covers a wide variety of stories. Raised in Laredo and as an anchor/reporter at KRGV in the Rio Grande Valley, Jessie is especially familiar with border and immigration issues. In 2007, Jessie also was inducted into the San Antonio Women's Hall of Fame.