Our future depends on us today

As we fight a war that none of us have any experience with, we need to think of our own responsibility. With no past road map to provide us with solutions and currently having China as the only example to follow due to them being a few weeks ahead in infections. We have to start thinking logically in how this unprecedented situation will impact our lives today and more importantly tomorrow.

Phase 1 – The immediate focus is to prevent mass panic amongst the general population, tough decisions have to be made to limit the spread of the virus. This will ensure that our healthcare services are not overwhelmed with patients. The Government needs to communicate clearly the initial steps to be taken, as well as the future steps that might have to be taken. This communication must be done in a transparent and honest manner. Doing so will reduce fake news and add confidence thereby motivating us to become part of the solution and not the problem. We need to immediately limit travel, quarantine our most vulnerable, the elderly and the children who are the most efficient at transmitting the virus.

Phase 2 – Now for the difficult economic decisions. Economically we need to plan steps of business closures but this will be the most painful of all Coronavirus decisions as it will affect us all. We need to allow workers to choose to work from home if possible and simultaneously close most businesses until we are confident that the virus is under control and our healthcare system is stable. This could obviously ruin many small and medium sized businesses which are the core to our economy. For this reason these closures need to be done with transparency and honesty.

Government will have to support these businesses by quickly and effectively obtaining interest free loans, arranging a freeze on debt payments to banks, issuing a freeze on taxes and social security. This will allow businesses to meet their responsibilities with suppliers and salaries to workers. Otherwise we risk a total meltdown and collapse of our economic system. Government will also have to ensure financial support to freelances/self employed people and secure unemployment benefits to those in need.

Holidays should be encouraged to be taken now instead of August as hopefully by then we could be working again if we handle this outbreak effectively and immediately. Holidays will have to be at home under self quarantine, but after all isn’t it a privilege to spend time with Family.

Phase 3 – Once Coronavirus infection and deaths are stable, we need to start up the economy by firstly opening businesses that are not able to work from home. Only once we are confident that the situation is stable should we open travel to regions that are in a similar but not worse situation to our own. Finally once numbers are controlled only then should we ease all business restrictions but keep children and the elderly quarantined for the simple reason of not increasing infections and death rates.

Final phase – The world will never be the same again but we should be a lot more prepared for the next virus coming which will be undoubtedly be deadlier than Coronavirus. We will be better prepared to deal with lockdowns, virtual school, virtual church and even family time. We will also have more experience on keeping calm, living day to day and dealing with the abnormal.

We have dealt with this unexpected challenge not alone but in a joint effort between people, citizens and countries. We will also finally understand that we need to help the less fortunate as this affect us all negatively if we don’t. It is now clear that it’s impossible to be an island, as we can only get stronger together.

It won’t be easy as we will have to stay positive after people we love have died or we have lost our jobs or the plans we previously had have fallen apart. The final phase will be phycological as we can’t just go back to how it was before. We will have to use this experience to improve ourselves and believe we can build a brighter future. We had so much division, so much hate, so much selfishness and none of this has given us the control we so much desired.

We will overcome this period but never forget that tomorrow depends on our decisions today. Make the right decisions today as they are just like a virus and affect us all.

Stay safe, Courageous and Brave.

This article was posted at link to leaders, 16/03/2020.

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