As we are all dealing with social distancing and remote learning, what we tend to forget is how people across the country and across the world are dealing with the coronavirus crisis. Even though we are fortunate enough to be college students benefiting from a great education, there are millions of people around the world who are not so lucky. The coronavirus hasn’t just made millions of people sick and killed thousands of people, it has also sent thousands upon thousands of people into unemployment and has created a huge disparity between the wealthy and the poor. The truth is that people are not just suffering from adapting to new conditions of interacting with friends, family, and colleagues, people are fighting for survival. Especially those from low-income families, who have been fired from their jobs, and those who are homeless have been abandoned by society for the most part. The entire world is in the midst of a recession and the global economy continues to be on the decline.
Since the outbreak began on Dec. 31, major global stocks such as the Financial Times Stock Exchange (FTSE) Dow Jones, and the Nikkei, have been on the decline. Specifically, just on April 3 both the Dow and the FTSE suffered their worst decline ever since 1987. With the stock market being the pinnacle of economic growth around the world, for countries such as the United States, where millions of people depend on its success, the coronavirus has done anything but stimulate positivity. According to The Guardian, last week the unemployment has now risen to a total of 6.6 million people in the United States, with an additional 16 million people losing their jobs due to the coronavirus in the past three weeks. These startling numbers are no joke as millions of Americans were forced to file for unemployment benefits with job shutdown spreading from restaurants and leisure businesses to now industries that focus on manufacturing, construction, and healthcare. In addition, due to the rapid increase of job losses in every state, economists are now predicting that the unemployment rate for the United States will soon be 15% and has the chance to go higher. Americans all across the country are becoming more worried and desperate for help from local and state governments.
According to BBC news, more than 100 countries around the world have travel restrictions. What does this entail? This means that the European Union has restricted international travel for 30 days which has become known as an “unprecedented move.” In the United States, President Trump has, in turn, banned travelers who come from European airports entering into the country. With this in mind, BBC also has focused on the world economy. BBC reports that the world economy is heading towards its slowest growth rate since 2009. This means that for countries such as China, the United States, the United Kingdom, and France, they will endure a harsh economic decline. Especially for the United States, major populated states such as New York, California, Michigan, and Florida. It has been reported that specifically in these states where economic devastation has been the most impactful. According to The Guardian, there have been more than 86,000 deaths around the world with the United States having over 432,000 confirmed cases. While that number is still increasing, it does not tell the story of how people are dealing with the crisis.
In these dark, troubling times it is important to have hope as every moment that passes a new opportunity emerges. For the past three weeks, many of my friends and family members have been severely affected by the coronavirus in New York. Not only are they being forced to stay indoors and protect themselves from the virus they are forced to deal with the inaccessibility to obtain resources such as food and medical supplies. The feeling of desperation and loneliness is only the start of what people are feeling nowadays. It pains me to watch the news every day and to see people all around the world in complete dismay and agony. Even though I am at home, I can feel the suffering that echos all around me. My neighborhood a once diverse and illuminating place filled with happiness and delight has become a ghost town. I look out my window from time to time to watch the rays of the sun reflect on houses or buildings or to see birds fly by. But I rarely see anyone outside at all. The coronavirus has become historic not just how it has impacted countries such as the United States economically but how people on a daily basis have been dealt with tragic blows everyday. However, as everyone is saying nowadays, it is going to get worse before it gets better.