Volume 10, Issue 1, January/April 2021
COVID–19 and Job Losses
Should Affirmative Action and Preferential Hiring still be Applicable in South Africa?
The SARS-COVID-2 virus that causes the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has been having a challenging and devastating impact on finances and jobs worldwide. More specifically, in South Africa, the COVID-19 pandemic is having a crippling effect on jobs. Companies and businesses are struggling to operate and retain workers as revenue streams are drying up. Owners of companies and businesses have been forced to make difficult decisions. An example is the retrenchment of workers by some organizations because of the financial fall-out due to the coronavirus pandemic. Also, before the pandemic, South Africa had unemployment challenges, economic downgrading, and high levels of inequality (within the employment sector). These challenges bring to mind what the employment method and strategy will look like during the (post)-COVID-19. In view of these challenges, one question that comes to mind is: given the COVID-19 pandemic and the fact that the job losses affected people of all races, should the policies of affirmative action and preferential hiring still be considered in South Africa? Thus, this paper is a philosophical reflection on COVID-19, job losses, affirmative action, and preferential hiring in South Africa. In reflecting on the above, this paper aims to show that affirmative action and preferential hiring should not be considered in South Africa during the (post)-COVID-19. I conclude that in the face of this tragedy, for the sustainability of the economy, everyone needs to work together to re-establish and reconstruct the country and build an inclusive economy.