South Africa: It's No Coincidence That Covid-19 Disproportionately Infects and Kills Black People

opinion

Globally black people are more than four times more likely to die from Covid-19 than white people, exposing a stark and dramatic divergence in the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

As the story of the coronavirus pandemic unfolds, global data is revealing a clear over-representation of black people and women, both in rates of infection, prognosis, and mortality from Covid-19, and the importance of systemic inequality. The topic of inequalities has always been central to social justice, sociology and related fields such as social policy, gender studies, critical race studies and human geography.

Most recently, digital inequality has emerged as a major topic. Rightly so, as Covid-19 spreads across the world, cross-cultural comparisons are at the forefront of people's minds. Race and ethnicity, as well as religion and faith, continue to be powerful forces in demarcating social divisions and inequalities in contemporary societies, despite the ever-growing diversity of our global cities.

On 31 December 2019, the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported a cluster of pneumonia cases in Wuhan City, China. "Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2" (SARS-CoV-2) was confirmed as the causative agent of what we now know as "Coronavirus Disease 2019" (Covid-19). Since then, the unprecedented, unrelenting and uncertain...

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