Americans to be the Hardest Hit Due to Coronavirus Job Losses: ILO

The deadly virus outbreak has created a major stir around the world in recent times claiming the lives of more than 350,000 people worldwide

The Americas is going to bear the brunt of a probable 305 million losses of jobs caused by the coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic between April and June, the Internation Labour Organization stated on Wednesday.

The deadly virus outbreak also risked the creation of a lockdown generation of young people who are forced to play catch-up in the labor market for a minimum of 10 years, the body that is based in Geneva mentioned.

Coronavirus Affecting Job Sector

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Its report left its estimate for second-quarter job losses - calculated in terms of working hours compared to a pre-pandemic baseline - unchanged from a month ago. The Americas, meanwhile, had jumped from being the least affected region in labor market terms in the first quarter to be the most affected, with an expected 13.1 percent drop in working hours in the second, ILO Director-General, Guy Ryder, told a briefing.

That was due to its having become the outbreak's new epicenter. Ryder said he was "extremely concerned" about young people who are being affected disproportionately by the crisis, saying this might lead to a "lockdown generation".

Organization Highlighted Problems in US and Brazil

"Young people are simply going to be left behind, and in big numbers," he said. "...The danger is, that this initial shock to young people will last a decade or longer. It will affect the (employment) trajectory ... throughout their working lives." More than one in six working people aged up 24 had lost their jobs since the start of the outbreak, the ILO said.

The organization also highlighted particular problems in the United States and Brazil. It was "worrisome" that the U.S. labor market remained "difficult" while other countries easing lockdowns had started to see modest recoveries, said the director of its Employment Policy Department, Sangheon Lee.

In Brazil, there was "good reason to be concerned both about the trajectory of the pandemic and the capacity to put in place the right sort of (workplace) measures to react to it," Ryder said. The ILO hiked its estimate of first-quarter job losses by 7 million to 135 million.

(With agency inputs)

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