There are many complaints about the way American administration has dealt with the Coronavirus pandemic. Many believe that Donald Trump hasn't done enough to cope with the crisis. However, one pastor in the troubled city of Chicago is complaining that in his metropolitan town, too much of the resources are being devoted to COVID-19 alone.
Pastor Corey Brooks who is also the CEO of Project H.O.O.D. has alleged that not enough is being done for the deprived areas of the Windy City which have serious health and social issues. The two regions he mentioned in a television interview, which he feels are neglected, happen to be the west side and south side of the city.
"Spending $66 million and $1.7 million for a patient is a very unfortunate thing, especially when we have areas on the south side and west side of Chicago that are impoverished and dealing with their own health issues that need resources," Pastor Brooks told Fox News channel.
The pastor was referring to the turning of McCormick Place into an emergency medical facility for Coronavirus-infected patients. The $66 million spent on this transformation hasn't helped the number of people that were expected. Till date, only 38 patients have been brought to this facility for treatment which otherwise has 2,750 beds.
The money for this enterprise came from the taxpayers, 75% of it from the Federal government. With just 38 patients receiving treatment so far, the average money spent on each of them is the figure Pastor Brooks cited - $1.7 million. This seems a vulgar amount in a city that is facing several other problems and has impoverished areas that need attention.
Value of the facility
However, the Chicago administration led by Mayor Lori Lightfoot are still defending the construction of the state-of-the-art facility. There were initial fears that the pandemic would spiral out of control in the windy city that same way it did in New York. However, things didn't go as per expectations.
Deputy Mayor of Chicago for economic and neighbourhood development Samir Mayekar has pointed out that the medical implements in the makeshift hospital can be used later on as well and shifted to other facilities if required.
What worries people like Pastor Brooks is the fact that Chicago has deprived areas like the ones he mentioned which have populations which are in dire need of social support. Some of these areas have also been witness to increased crime due to the prevailing conditions. At a time when social justice has become the watchword in American politics, keeping these areas in mind, even during this crisis is required.