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EU RESPONSE TO COVID-19
Research & Innovation Projects
This is a multi-disciplinary research project on the Role of European Mobility and its Impacts, in Narratives, Debates and EU Reforms. The project, which is led by University of Oxford, recently examined “COVID-caused lack of seasonal workers endangers EU food supply chains”.
Migrants, who traditionally filled temporary shortages in farms, factories, distribution and shops, can no longer be recruited as easily as before, resulting today in at least 200,000 missing workers in France, 300,000 in Germany and 370,000 in Italy.
Funded by H2020, the project identified a number of measures that address fiscal policy loopholes affecting Member States’ capacity to yield taxes in a fair, transparent and universal manner.
The COVID-19 outbreak is a major shock for the European and global economies. Governments are committing huge hundreds if billions in cash, loans and bank guarantees to companies and households, while tax revenues, are collapsing due to lockdowns. This adds to the huge amounts lost every year due to tax evasion and avoidance, with estimates reaching €1 trillion. Re-establishing financial stability will be a painful, gradual and long way, harming societies as a whole. But raising financial resources necessary to relaunch the economy while reducing socio-economic inequalities and maintaining citizens’ trust in democratic institutions, is feasible.
The psychological impact of quarantine
The Commission has recently supported a review of novel scientific evidence to better understand the psychological impact of quarantine. Successful use of quarantine requires reducing the negative effects associated with it.
• The psychological impact of quarantine and how to reduce it: rapid review of the evidence - The Lancet
Longer periods of isolation are associated with poorer mental health outcomes and increased anger.
Extending the isolation period beyond initial suggestions can demoralise and increase non-compliance. Clarity and certainty about timelines are both important.
If quarantine is essential we should mitigate its negative aspects as much as possible by: telling people what is happening and why, explaining how long it will continue, providing meaningful activities for them to do while in quarantine, providing clear communication, ensuring basic supplies (such as food, water, and medical supplies) are available, and reinforcing the sense of altruism that people should, rightly, be feeling.
Source: European Union, http://www.europa.eu/, 1998-2020