By: T. Pacini
Pandemics teach us a lot about the society we live in, and the inequality present within it. During the Antonine plague of the Roman empire and the Black Death of 14th Century, massive inequalities emerged, and early signs indicate that the Covid-19 crisis will have a similar social impact.
During the current pandemic, the World Health Organization (WHO) suggests countries practice social distancing, but true distancing is often a privilege of the rich. The less well-off are much more likely to be temporarily laid off or do unregistered work (such as selling their manufactured goods on the streets) and have lost the means of making money and earning a steady income. These people rely on the government for financial aid in order to feed their families and maintain a good quality of life. Consequently, these are the people under most pressure to break lockdown rules as they fret they won’t get the money they need to survive.
This highlights the importance of governments adopting policies that can successfully sustain the people economically so they can safely practice social distancing at home. As always it is important to reiterate the importance of social distancing as it will allow us to contain the spread of the Covid-19 and ultimately allow us to recover faster economically.