Pope Francis warns against any prospect that rich people would be given priority over coronavirus vaccines

Pope Francis warned Wednesday against any chance that rich people would be given priority for a coronavirus vaccine.

“The pandemic is a crisis. You are not getting the same out of it – even better than worse,” Francis said, adding impromptu remarks to his planned speech to his weekly audience.

“We need to get out better” of the COVID-19 pandemic, the pope said.

After the COVID-19 pandemic, the pope said, the world could not return to normalcy as normal social injustice and degradation of the natural environment meant.

Francis said: “How sad it would be if for the COVID-19 vaccine priority is given to the richest.”

He also said it would be scandalous if all economic assistance in the works, most of it with public funds, ends up with the revival of industries that do not help the poor or the environment.

“The pandemic has exposed the plight of the poor and the great inequality that reigns in the world,” the pope said in his speech. “And the virus, though it makes no exceptions among individuals, has in its path, destructive, great inequality and discrimination,” Francis said, adding “and it has increased them.

During the whole pandemic, many poor people, who often have jobs that they can not work from home, are less able to protect themselves against possible contamination in stay-at-home strategies, which are practiced by many peoples have been introduced to reduce the infection rate. Access to the best health care for the poor is often impossible in many parts of the world.

Francis said the response to the pandemic should be twofold. On the one hand, “it is indispensable to find the cure for such a small but great virus that is bringing the whole world to its knees.”

On the other hand, “we have to deal with a big virus, that of social injustice, of inequality of opportunity, of being marginalized and of lack of protection of the weakest,” Francis said.

Francis has devoted much of his papacy to highlighting the plight of those living on the margins, saying societies need to put them at the center of their attention.

Noting how much she would like to return to normality and resume economic activity, Francis played out caution: “Sure, but this ‘normality’ should not involve social injustice and degradation of the environment.”

“Today we have an opportunity to build something else. For example, we can grow an economy of integrated development of the poor and not of welfare,” the pope said.