How to fight the COVID-19 pandemic: A program of action for the working class

The COVID-19 pandemic is a global disaster. In just three months, it has spread across the planet. The scale and impact of the pandemic have been intensified by the indifference and criminal negligence of capitalist governments, which have wasted precious time.

An enormous amount of time has been lost, but the impact and extent of the pandemic depends on urgent responses that can be taken now. These measures must be centered on two absolutely critical priorities: First, to contain the spread of the virus as much as possible, and second, given that it has already acquired global dimensions, to provide emergency care for all who are ill and emergency assistance to all who are affected.

The essential principle that must guide the response to the crisis is that the needs of working people must take absolute and unconditional priority over all considerations of corporate profit and private wealth. It is not a matter of what the ruling class claims it can afford, but what masses of people need.

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Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific
28 March 2020
The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.
Strong response to Nick Beams’ IYSSE (Australia) online lecture on coronavirus pandemic
28 March 2020
The refusal of governments to take the necessary measures to address the pandemic, Beams stated, was inextricably tied to the systematic social attacks on the working class.
Workers remain at risk during New Zealand’s COVID-19 lockdown
28 March 2020
A state of emergency has been imposed, parliament suspended and the military placed on standby, but many workers remain at risk of contagion.
Australian medical workers speak on the growing crisis in the health system
28 March 2020
Health workers are increasingly being forced to source their own supplies to ensure they and their colleagues have masks, goggles, gowns and gloves.


Australian governments reject calls for lockdown despite rising COVID-19 danger
28 March 2020
The “national cabinet” is determined to keep as many workers as possible on the job in order to shore up corporate profits.
Australian unions and employers demand workers stay on building sites despite pandemic
27 March 2020
The unions are determined to utilise the coronavirus crisis to prove themselves indispensible to big business.
Australia’s imprisoned refugees plead for release as coronavirus risk increases
27 March 2020
Detainees have protested at being held “in a potential death trap in which we have no option or means to protect ourselves.”
Australian school system in chaos after coronavirus semi-closures
27 March 2020
Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s insistence that schools remain open as usual reflected economic, not health, considerations.