The Guardian

The Guardian 4 May 2020

The coronavirus murals trying to keep Kenya's slums safe

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A street artist called Msale has taken it upon himself to create giant murals bringing public health messages directly to the overcrowded Mathare slum in Nairobi. With half a million people living in such 'a squeezed area'  social distancing is quite impossible to achieve, says Msale, so he is providing information for people on how to keep safe from Covid-19 in the 'simplest, clearest' way he knows


From a health crisis to a food crisis, the coronavirus pandemic is upending the world as we know it. The United Nations's World Food Programme (WFP) is warning of multiple famines "of biblical proportions" as tens of millions of people are plunged into starvation.

Long before the pandemic, the agency had been warning world leaders that 2020 would bring "the worst humanitarian crisis since world war two".

An estimated 135 million people face starvation and that could double to 265 million by the end of the year. It blames the perfect storm, the wars in Yemen and Syria, natural disasters and changing weather patterns.

At particular risk are refugees and informal workers. For example, it is estimated that about 136 million people in India working in the non-agriculture sector are at immediate risk of losing their jobs.

With more than two billion people under lockdown, supply chains have been disrupted. But that disruption is not just in emerging and developing markets.

The rapid collapse of economic activity has led to more than 30 million people applying for unemployment benefits in the United States and a sharp increase in demand at American food banks, according to food charities. And yet, farmers are destroying produce, dumping milk and culling livestock despite grocery stores struggling to stock shelves.

While rich nations have the financial muscle to see themselves through the crisis, it is the low income and developing nations that could see past economic gains disappear.

Maximo Torero, the chief economist of the Food and Agriculture Organization, explains what kind of effect the pandemic might have on the economies of developing nations.

The spread of the virus among workers at US meat processing plants has raised concerns of food shortages. But, President Donald Trump passed an order to keep them open, which has been criticised by unions and some investors.

Maria Lettini, the executive director of FAIRR, a $20 trillion investor group, explained how Trump's decision might sow the seeds for future pandemics.

Loan or grants?

European Union nations hit hard by the coronavirus hope to convince others to provide them with grants rather than loans as they plan a route to recovery.

Italy and Spain would like to avoid taking loans, which would increase their debt burden.

Italy's debt currently stands at 134.8 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and that number is expected to rise to 155.7 percent due to the crisis.

European nations have spent more than 1.8 trillion euros ($1.99 trillion) on tackling the pandemic. But the economy is expected to contract by 7.5 percent, according to the International Monetary Fund. The EU has now agreed to a one trillion-euro ($1.11 trillion) recovery fund to help nations.

Lorenzo Codogno, chief economist at Macro Advisors, comments on the deal and Michael Reid, senior editor at the Economist, shares his thoughts with Al Jazeera.
GLOBAL HANGOUT: The #coronavirus pandemic and lockdowns around the world are affecting every aspect of life — even love — as relationships are being tested in extraordinary ways. Some couples are separated. Some are accelerating their relationships and living together far sooner than planned. Others are reinventing the idea of dating. We share three incredible stories of love under lockdown and speak with a relationship expert about the social and romantic impact of this pandemic. ⁣ ⁣

OUR GUESTS:⁣ ⁣

Hilda Burke ⁣
Couples Counselor and Integrative Psychotherapist⁣
London, UK⁣ ⁣

Serena Coady⁣
Journalist⁣
Thames River, South London, UK ⁣ ⁣

Henny Ansell⁣
Analyst⁣
Wellington, New Zealand⁣ ⁣

Thi Lam ⁣
Co-creator, Love is Quarantine⁣
Brooklyn, New York⁣ ⁣

Rance Nix⁣
Co-creator, Love is Quarantine⁣
Brooklyn, New York
The coronavirus pandemic has confronted NHS workers with an extraordinary challenge. A BBC team reports from the frontline -- with medical teams fighting to save patients at Imperial College Healthcare in London.

Meanwhile there's concern about a sharp fall in the number of people attending accident and emergency departments in England.

Some health charities fear that people with serious conditions such as heart attacks or stroke are avoiding or delaying going to A&E for fear of coming into contact with coronavirus.

Sophie Raworth presents BBC News at Ten reports - from Fergal Keane and cameraman Tony Fallshaw at Imperial College - and from Health Correspondent Dominic Hughes.
The Fed is pulling out all the stops to keep liquidly flowing through the U.S. financial system, and now, through Main Street business as well. Here's a look at all the measures the Fed's put in place since the pandemic hit the United States, and what kind of monetary policy tools it has left in its arsenal.

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