In the wake of the Coronavirus, there is no doubt that the lockdown measures that are taking place disproportionally affect those who don’t have the privilege to work from home, especially those who rely on a daily income in order to survive.
This is why the Army has recently decided to send food rations to poor families in Tripoli. In areas like Tebbeneh, Jabal Mohsen, and Dahr el-Moghr, which are considered some of the poorest in the city and, to a certain degree, in the entire region of North Lebanon.
The army and Internal Security Forces (ISF) have recently been deployed by the government, through orders from the Interior Ministry headed by Mohammad Fahmi, in order to enforce the quarantine after it was found that people were violating it.
The quarantine is sure to endanger the livelihoods of many people who cannot do their job at home. Bus drivers in Tripoli, for example, have previously closed down roads in order to ask the government to compensate for their losses due to the ongoing crisis.
The government is doing the best it can in order to implement the necessary measures to limit the spread of the Coronavirus. However, it is not enough to merely enforce quarantine measures when many cannot afford to not be working.
As the Coronavirus compounds itself upon the economic crisis that the country is facing, there are going to be a lot of people who are going to suffer as a result of inactivity. This is not just a problem exclusive to Lebanon, however.
The Coronavirus is projected to decrease the entire world’s economic growth by about 20% by the end of 2020 but a “longer lasting and more intensive” outbreak may even cut it down in half.
The global stock market has seen its biggest dip since 1987 as the Dow Jones and FTSE have seen a 31.1% and 34.1% decrease in value respectively in March.
Compassionate actions, like the one by the Lebanese army to the poor people in Tripoli, are very beautiful and heart-warming. However, the government has a great challenge ahead to help Lebanon’s citizens survive when there is no way for them to make a living.
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