Oxfam International Executive Director Gabriella Butcher said, “Inequality at such a speed and scale is happening by choice, not by chance. “Not only have our economic structures made us all less secure against this pandemic, they are actively involved in Enabling those who are already extremely rich and powerful to exploit this crisis to their advantage.”
The charity says that if the ten richest people in the world – including Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates – were taxed at a one-time rate of 99%, that would be enough COVID-19 cases for each person. Will generate enough revenue to make vaccines. World; and provide universal health care and social protection in more than 80 countries, fund climate adaptation and reduce gender-based violence.
It says this can be achieved even if the rich are left with $8 billion better off than they were before the pandemic.
Oxfam is urging governments to:
- Take back the gains made by billionaires by taxing this vast new wealth created since the start of the pandemic through permanent wealth and capital taxes.
- Invest the trillions these taxes can raise toward progressive spending on universal health care and social security, climate change adaptation, and gender-based violence prevention and programming.
- Deal with sexist and racist laws that discriminate against women and racial people, and create new gender-equal laws to end violence and discrimination. All sectors of society must urgently define policies that will ensure representation of women, racial and other oppressed groups in all decision-making spaces.
- Eliminate laws that undermine workers’ rights to unionize and strike, and establish stronger legal standards to protect them.
- Rich governments should immediately waive intellectual property rules on COVID-19 vaccine technologies to allow more countries to produce safe and effective vaccines at the end of the pandemic.