The Covid-19 outbreak has created serious mental and physical health problems in societies. In addition, economic and social problems arose. We are going through a period in which the impact of the epidemic on people is shaped according to the classes to which those people belong. As far as it seems, the most devastating effects of the epidemics stand out as the deepening of social and economic inequality. The Covid-19 pandemic, which affects the whole world, affects the individuals who make up the society differently, both in accessing health services and in meeting their basic needs such as accommodation and food. The great disproportionality in meeting the needs took on an advanced dimension, further increasing the inequality between social classes. With this trend, it seems inevitable that the difference will widen further and a deep gap will occur between social classes. Aside from the imbalance and inequality in meeting basic needs, this is now heading towards an end with more dire consequences: Humanity’s most fundamental right to life is in danger!
Of course, the virus affects everyone regardless of religion, language or race, and we all agree on this issue. All sections of society around the world are in anxiety and fear. However, it is not possible to say that the economic crisis affected all classes of society equally. Different layers of society contribute differently to the social workforce and production. This devastating situation hit the working groups, the poor and the unemployed, who were caught unprepared, the poorest. Especially those working in the compulsory service and production sectors for the continuation of social life continued to work. They are at a more disadvantage than those who work from home, those who work flexibly, those who have a fixed income or have a guaranteed job and income. It will be easily seen that segments with different statuses, operating in various fields of production, and having different economic opportunities do not have equal conditions during the phase of virus exposure and protection. It is clear that a segment that has to work in order to survive and lacks any background will be at much more risk than a segment that does not have to work or has the opportunity to work in the background. Unfortunately, both the higher risk of getting the disease and the worsening economic situation affect this segment much worse.
Due to shrinking economies and constraints, workers with the world’s largest workforce on low wages or unpaid leave, the unemployed who lost their jobs, the unemployed, shuttered small businesses, small business owners, artisans and, of course, people who make a living on daily wages have worsened. People who were struggling with the problems of class difference created by economic inequality in the past have now become almost impossible to cope with the brutal conditions created by this extraordinary situation. This led to the widening of the difference in the socioeconomic structures of the social classes and the inequality to become more pronounced. As soon as possible, it is necessary to stop saying that virus class difference, rich and poor do not discriminate. Because, in studies conducted around the world, it has been documented that this epidemic spreads faster in poorer populations, is more severe in these groups, and deaths are higher (age, chronic disease, genetic factors have been examined separately). It should be the common goal of all countries to end this problem without causing irreversible consequences by taking the necessary political and economic steps. This is their essential duty to humanity.
I think we are going through a process where mathematics should be used in the most beneficial way because current decisions will determine future costs. Despite every negativity and all this dire process, I think that everything we experience is a tool that always brings us to the better, and we need to spend our attention and energy on survival, production and dreams. I believe that everyone who read this article has gone through very difficult processes before, but just as they survived and continued on their way stronger, they will still take lessons from this teaching and have the best days they dream of. No difficult process has lasted forever and will not continue …
Sociologist and Author Bircan Yıldırım
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