By Anne Welsh – Founder and CEO Painless Universal
August 10th, 2020.
The inevitability of serious pain to people at the poorer end of the living spectrum should come as no surprise when a catastrophic event such as an economic recession or a pandemic that upsets the social fabric occurs.
The sad reality is that poor people are going to impacted by the economic difficulty brought on by this pandemic but unfortunately, they are also over-represented in jobs that expose them directly to infection because of the interaction with the wider public.
Take the United Kingdom as an example. The reality is that most Britons are not at any risk of serious illness at all. The mortality rate is believed to be less than 0.5 per cent and much lower for those under 70 and those without underlying health issues. If those are the facts, then what needs to be done to support the poorest people in society.
The first step is to get children back in school. If this happens then parents can go to work, earn a living, and support their families. If children are not in school, then it becomes impossible for most households to function and generate revenue for the family unit. Children from poorer families do not have the option of private school and their future is being eroded by not being in education. Any delay in securing their education future should not be acceptable to society.
Ramifications of long-term working from home must be carefully considered. In the UK economy, consumer services make up 80% of all economic activity. Offices are therefore vital for the livelihoods of millions, often the poorest in society. Also, for many young people living in shared and often cramped accommodation, home working is miserable.
Putting policies and effort into returning to a normal functioning society is a powerful element of social justice and is a duty of us all. There is a vast number of essential workers that are unable to work from home but have carried on heroically.
When you see a nurse, a bus or cab driver, a cleaner, supermarket stacker, retail salesperson or hotel receptionist, please treat them with the utmost respect because these important roles (and there are many others), require individuals to take on a much higher risk to their personal health.
As a person living with a chronic illness, I have learned that no matter what challenges you face, It is important to keep moving forward regardless of what challenges are in front of you. Any delay in the recovery process can cause more delay to your wellbeing and subsequent economic stability. Together we can beat the economic and health pain!