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COVID-19 pandemic claims four times as many jobs as financial crisis a decade ago

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Posted: Monday, February 1, 2021. 4:29 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: The International Labour Organization (ILO) reports that 255 million full-time jobs, 8.8 percent of all work hours in 2020, were destroyed due to restrictions on business and public life caused by the COVID-19 pandemic – quadruple the impact of the global financial crisis in 2009-10.

The Associated Press via PBS Newshour quotes ILO Director-General Guy Ryder as saying that this has been the most severe work crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s, with a near-equal split between reduced work hours and unprecedented job losses in fallout.

According to the ILO, an arm of the United Nations, those who lost jobs have not been looking since because of continued business restrictions for agencies that hire in larger numbers and depend on face-to-face interaction: restaurants, bars, stores, hotels and other services

$3.7 trillion in global income was wiped out as a result, with women and young people taking the biggest hits.

The ILO report expects a bounce-back in jobs in the second half of the year. But that depends on a reduction in coronavirus infections and the rollout of vaccines. Currently, infections are rising or remain stubbornly high in many countries and vaccine distribution is still slow overall.

 

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