What's driving the Inequality crisis? There's a variety of intersecting issues but here in this thread are five key systems that cause this crisis, we'll focus on one a day over the course of the week. #FightInequality #InequalityVirus #WEF21
Sexist patriarchal attitudes & norms place the needs of men first. Those ten millionaires that have gained half a TRILLION DOLLARS since the pandemic started. Any of them women??
Of course not!
Globally, women are overrepresented in low-paid precarious professions that have been hardest hit by the pandemic. If women were represented at the same rate as men in these sectors, 112 million women would no longer be at high risk of losing their incomes or jobs.
Women also make up roughly 70 percent of the global health and social care workforce − essential but often poorly paid jobs that put them at greater risk from #COVID19
Not saying all nurses are women but this is the sort of example you can find right through the care sector.
These roles also put women at particular risk, especially where access to PPE has been limited.
Women are also frequently the principal caregivers when household members fall sick, which puts them at greater risk of being exposed to the #coronavirus
Greater unpaid care responsibilities214 & the resulting gender-differentiated exposure to work & household stressors contribute to poor mental health in women, including depression. As well as increased exposure to the risk of violence.
Women & girls also bear the brunt of reduced access to sexual & reproductive health services during the #COVID19
pandemic, which increases the risk of unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections & complications during pregnancies.
It's estimated that maternal deaths have increased by between 8% and 39% per month in Lower & Middle Income Countries, due to #COVID19
related reductions in perinatal care.
In Nepal, from March-May 2020, lockdowns halved the number of births in health facilities, & contributed to a 3-fold increase in risk of neonatal death https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/08/200810183926.htm
If anything this pandemic has reinforced rather than challenged the patriarchy.
It's led to increased gender based violence, reduced access to resources, & avoidable death for women.
All because societies -around the world- take these issues as "the way things are, and must be."
Second driver of the Inequality crisis--->>
2. WHITE SUPREMACY
Centuries of colonialism imposing a capitalist system by white people, for white people.
White supremacy ensures that white people enjoy rights and financial advantages that other racial & ethnic groups do not
Racism is also a pandemic.
Black people, Afro-descendants, Indigenous Peoples are more likely to contract #COVID19
, & to suffer the worst consequences.
In USA, hospitalization rates due to COVID-19 were 5 times higher for Black, Latinx, & Native Americans than for White people.
, Pardo & Black people admitted to hospital w/ #COVID19
had higher risk of mortality than White people. Brazilians of Afro-descent are 40% more likely to die of COVID than White Brazilians. If their death rate had been equal over 9,200 Afro-descendants would still be alive
By April 2020, the % of confirmed #COVID19
cases among Somalis in Norway & Finland was 10 times their % share of the population, & they accounted for a significant proportion of deaths....
In the Amazon region, the number of #COVID19
deaths among Indigenous populations increased from 113 to 2,139 in barely 6 months, an increase two-and-a-half times that registered among the general population.
Just some examples of White Supremacy in practice. This isn't a mistake, the capitalist economy is set up specifically to benefit a small set of privileged white men at the "top", & to marginalise & exploit. Colonialism set this up on purpose & these are the results.
Third driver of the Inequality crisis
Creation of the myth of meritocracy, & push to keep"government interference"out of the"economic free market"
Neoliberalism blames individuals for the systemic oppressions they face, & absolves govts of resp to ensure fairness
Neoliberalism is driven in part by the first two drivers in this series:
1. Patriarchy and 2. White Supremacy.
Which means white men are privileged to thrive while women, racialized, and other marginalised groups are exploited for the benefit and enrichment of the elites.
This system drives a relentless accumulation of wealth & income at the top,while squeezing those at the bottom & fuelling poverty. Despite a doubling of GDP since 1990, in low- and lower-middle-income countries, over half of workers still live in poverty
This economic model,based on unequal & carbon-intensive growth,is accelerating the #climatecrisis
, to enrich the already affluent, rather than reducing poverty. The richest 1% were responsible for 15% of emissions 1990-2015-more than twice as much as the poorest half of humanity
Neoliberal economics disregards existence of identities,instead reflecting interests of white supremacy & patriarchy,& diminishes the role of power associated w/ these identities.These systems sustain interlinked forms of inequality that are the root cause of poverty & injustice
Neoliberalism deconstructed political categories of race & gender to prioritize the idea of individualism & effort. This assumes that markets are self-regulating,fair,colour blind & gender blind. It states that a person´s position in life is the product of effort,talent & choice.
Neoliberalism is built on the assumption that race or gender are not an issue. As @DarrickHamilton
puts it, the neoliberal ideology promises economic prosperity will act as ‘a rising tide that lifts all boats’, but in the US, this promise never materialized for Black people.
Fourth driver of the Inequality crisis
Framing the economic norm as neoliberalism downplaying the role of governments in making the economy fairer, means that governments are pushed/pulled to make cuts in public spending, especially during inevitable economic crisis.
BUT austerity cuts affect the poorest while the same austerity is not applied to elites like the banks who get bailed out. A comprehensive study of government measures in the decade following the 2008 financial crisis found austerity measures affected 75% of the global population
These included cutting pensions, cutting wages of teachers & health workers, cutting subsidies & benefits & reducing labour rights. The decade since 2010 has seen increase in rates of regressive VAT, combined w/ reductions in tax rates for the richest corporations & individuals
Austerity policies lead to increased inequality, with disproportionate impacts on women & racialized groups.
Among other negative impacts, these policies have been blamed in part for the rise in populist, authoritarian, misogynist & racist politics. https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/5050/austerity-drives-populism-and-frontal-attack-rights-women/
Had countries increased taxation of the richest, they may have avoided austerity measures. @Oxfam
calculates that in Morocco a 2% tax on net wealth would've raised $6.17bn between 2010 & 2019, which could've been used to extend mandatory health insurance to 7.5million more people
Govt bailouts & rescue packages have also supported wealthy polluting industries.
G20 countries had pledged $251bn to fossil fuels as part of their recovery packages by Nov 2020.
This kind of action protects these companies & their rich shareholders from the worst impacts of the crisis, socializing their losses, treating these as a responsibility that society must shoulder-through taxpayer-funded bailouts-while they continue to destroy the planet.
As lower-income countries struggle to deliver essential services & social protection that citizens need, people living in poverty, women & marginalized groups, pay the biggest price. Patriarchal, white supremacist neoliberalism & austerity are destroying lives. #InequalityVirus
Despite this, more austerity is being planned: @Oxfam
analysis shows that by Sept 2020, 84% of the @IMFNews
loans were encouraging, & in some cases requiring, countries to adopt austerity measures in the aftermath of the health crisis https://www.oxfam.org/en/blogs/virus-austerity-covid-19-spending-accountability-and-recovery-measures-agreed-between-imf-and #COVID19
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