Russian lockdown creates impossible financial position for labor class

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The lockdown started in Russia on 30/03/2020. From day one, the army descended in Moscow to enforce the measures.

Non-essential work came to a grinding halt: restaurants, many factories, barber shops, clothing stores, and many more were not allowed to operate anymore. Many had to close their business indefinitely.

As a result, many people lost their jobs, adding previous business owners to the group. A large portion of the working class fell without income while unemployment benefits do not support basic needs. Also note that many people don’t want to be dependent on their government and want to work for sustaining their own lives.

Unemployment benefits vs daily costs of living

In Western countries unemployment benefits allow us to keep our heads above water: we can pay our rent and buy food. In Russia, this is unfortunately not the case. Have a look at the table below.

Income & costs per monthDollarsRubles
Unemployment benefits$24 – $1241500₽ – 8000₽
Costs food (barely any meat)$1248000₽
Rent 1 room flat (outside center)$21516467₽
Room, shared kitchen & shower $13310000₽
Minimum wage$17511280₽
Average wage Saint Petersburg$33325000₽
The values are not up to date with the exchange rates.
It’s not required to convey the point.

The highest unemployment benefits (8000₽) barely cover the costs for food. Also note, looking at the average wage in Saint Petersburg, a significant portion of the population roughly runs break-even at the end of the month. Many Russian live month to month with hardly any savings.

Some were able to fall back on their savings, others abandoned their flat and moved back in with their parents. There is also a group that doesn’t have these options.

Final thoughts

Governments all over the world confronted their citizens with measures that violate human rights and the constitution. Meanwhile, statistics and medical professionals have put the crisis argument to rest: infection and death rates are no worse than the annual flu.

In Belgium for example, supposedly badly hit by Covid19, we now have 7000 deaths. With a population of 11.5 million, that equates to a death rate of 0.061% half way through the crisis. The annual flue has a death rate of 0.1%.

The impact of the measures cause more harm than the actual virus. The economic system is in ruins. Isolation impairs our natural immune system. Domestic violence and suicides have skyrocketed.

I think it’s our moral duty to reject these tyrannical governments and end the lockdown as soon as possible. Not only is it plain wrong, but also, if we accept this, where will it end?

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