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February 3, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — Two reports released last week document the dramatically growing disparity between the world’s wealthiest people and the rising number of families living in poverty due to governments’ COVID-19 policies.

A report from the United Nations International Labour Organization (ILO) found that “8.8 per cent of global working hours were lost relative to the fourth quarter of 2019, equivalent to 255 million full-time jobs.” This equates to a job loss “approximately four times greater than during the global financial crisis in 2009.”

In addition, the global labor income lost in 2020 is “estimated to have declined by 8.3 per cent, which amounts to US $3.7 trillion,” including the highest percentage experienced by workers in the Americas at 10.3%, and the lowest in Asia and the Pacific at 6.6%.

Oxfam International also released a report, titled “The Inequality Virus,” which summarizes that “hundreds of millions of people are being forced into poverty while many of the richest — individuals and corporations — are thriving” as a result of COVID-19 policies put in place by governments across the world.

“Billionaire fortunes returned to their pre-pandemic highs in just nine months, while recovery for the world’s poorest people could take over a decade,” the organization wrote.

The report cites several global organizations, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), “the World Bank and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development [OECD],” stating they “have all expressed deep concern that the pandemic will drive up inequality all over the world, with deeply harmful effects.”

“The impact will be profound,” said Kristalina Georgieva, Managing Director of the IMF, “with increased inequality leading to economic and social upheaval: a lost generation in the 2020s whose after-effects will be felt for decades to come.”

Oxfam, a left-leaning organization devoted to “fighting inequality to end poverty and injustice,” based its findings on a survey of 295 economists in 79 countries, where “87% of respondents expected that income inequality in their country was either going to increase or strongly increase as a result of the pandemic.”

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Many small businesses are being forced to close temporarily or even permanently under the strain of a second wave of government-imposed COVID shutdowns.

This is totally and thoroughly wrong...especially when big business, government, and large segments of the professional world are totally insulated from the repercussions of the shutdowns.

Something drastic needs to be done now!

SIGN this urgent petition calling for state legislatures to cut the salaries of governors and mayors who are responsible for closing small businesses by enacting draconian COVID shutdown measures.

The bottom line is that the people imposing shutdown measures need to feel the bite of the restrictions they are imposing on other peoples' livelihoods so that they have a personal incentive to re-open their economies and make accommodation for the survival of small businesses.

Local restaurants, cafes, gyms, clothiers, bookshops, florists, and many more, are being forced to shut their doors, some forever.

Americans who have spent their entire lives building their business - and, taken all of the risk - stand to lose everything.

But, the following are all considered essential and never get shut down: lawyers, lobbyists, politicians, courts, big corporations, and the media...

And, to add insult to injury, some politicians who are imposing these shutdowns, like Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo, are actually getting huge pay raises starting in the new year. Cuomo's raise is $25,000 next year alone!

This is utterly scandalous! It is time to say enough is enough!

If small business owners are being CRUSHED by government COVID restrictions, the politicians responsible should also feel the BITE of those restrictions!

This is the only way to make the "political class" understand how devastating their shutdowns truly are to small business owners and their employees.

Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, supply millions of jobs to people across the country, and ironically provide the taxes used to fund the programs so loved by most of the governors and mayors.

Because of the nature of small and medium businesses, their owners and workers are on the frontlines of the COVID crisis.

They need to be rewarded for this bravery, not closed down.

Accommodation needs to be made for small businesses so that they can weather this storm and thrive after it has passed. These are businesses we all love using, and we want them to be there long after COVID is just a bad memory.

When this is all over, do we really want every coffee shop to be a Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts, or every restaurant to be a McDonald's?

The answer is not only "no," but "Heck, no!"

Therefore, governors and mayors need to be personally incentivized to do everything in their power to see that small and medium businesses can survive and thrive - AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.

That's why we're calling on state legislators to cut the salaries of all governors and mayors who are imposing draconian shutdowns where no accommodation is being made for small businesses.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition today!

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According to Forbes, for billionaires like Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, pandemic lockdown policies turned out to be a boon to their fortunes, with their collective net worth growing “by $1.1 trillion over the past ten months.”

This development is in sharp contrast to the devastation which has hit small locally-owned businesses, inflicting tremendous financial harm upon the middle class.

To put this difference in perspective, Forbes’ Tommy Beer explained that these billionaire gains could have financed all of the relief to working families in the federal government’s last $1.9 trillion stimulus package, “while leaving the nation’s richest households no worse off than they were before” government lockdown policies began last March.

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