Human impact of Mauritius' oil spill I COVID-19 vaccine: who should get it first?

Posted by: The Conversation Global

Date: Monday, 07 September 2020


The impact of Mauritius’ oil spill will be felt acutely by the island nation’s most vulnerable people, especially those who rely on the ocean for their livelihood. Rosabelle Boswell, who has researched racism, poverty and social change in Mauritius for more than 20 years, lays out her concerns about the potential consequences of the environmental disaster on the Creoles, descendants of African and Malagasy slaves. They settled along the country’s coastline after the abolition of slavery in 1835 and remain a highly marginalised community.

Meanwhile, as the world waits for an effective COVID-19 vaccine, tough decisions will need to be made about who gets the first shots. A committee of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recently recommended prioritising older adults after giving the vaccine to first responders and health care workers. However, Dana Goldman and David Conti of USC and Matthew E. Kahn of Johns Hopkins, scholars who have spent decades studying health economics and epidemiology, argue this pandemic “requires a different model” – one that prioritises the young after essential workers.

Moina Spooner

Commissioning Editor: East and Francophone Africa

Citizens rallied to stem the oil tide. Courtesy of Daphney Dupre

Mauritius must protect vulnerable coastal communities from the effects of the oil spill

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Mauritius' oil spill highlights the plight of impoverished communities that live along the coastline.

How should COVID-19 vaccine be prioritized? AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File

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