Even before the pandemic, low-income families were struggling to cope with the high cost of living. When the pandemic hit and lockdowns were imposed, many of them lost their day jobs and daily wage earners are left with no income. The only way they could survive was to dig into their savings.
A recent study by UNICEF explored the impact of the pandemic on low-income families living in urban areas. In the study, 500 households participated in the survey with a focus on the head of households and their financial standing.
Only 1 in 6 households have enough savings to last more than three months. What was more concerning was that half of the households headed by women do not have enough savings to last them even for a month!
During a Skype interview with the Malaysian Insight, Philip Alston, the former United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights cautioned that Malaysia could see a rise in poverty rates during this pandemic.
There is no doubt that this pandemic has made a dent in many businesses, but it is also the nation’s responsibility to look out for those who have no social protection or safety net.
Take a listen to this short interview:
Explore Our Sources
- UNICEF, UNFPA, & DM Analytics. (August 2020). Families on the Edge (Issue 1): The immediate impact of the Movement Control Order period. Retrieved from https://www.unicef.org/malaysia/reports/families-edge-issue-1. Link.