As the COVID-19 pandemic has continued to bring great suffering around the world, a number of the richest people on the planet have asked themselves the question, what can I do to help? For a group of 83 millionaires from seven countries, known as the “Millionaires for Humanity”, their answer was to release an open letter to governments, calling for a permanent tax increase on the very wealthiest people like themselves to help pay for the global recovery from this crisis. They’re not alone, sharing the ethos of the Share Gratitude platform, millionaires around the globe are digging deep.
This is World’s Story of Gratitude for The Millionaires Giving Back to Humanity
The letter released by the group praises the essential workers who have been on the frontline of the crisis and highlights the role that the richest people in society can play in helping to rebalance the world economy. In it, the group urges governments to raise taxes on millionaires and billionaires “immediately, substantially and permanently.” Their desire is to see the money go to frontline workers, schools and hospitals in all countries and all communities.
Morris Pearl, investor and the chairman of the Patriotic Millionaires said: “The COVID-19 crisis has revealed the fragility of our system and shown that no one ―rich or poor― is better off in a society with massive inequality and a failing social safety net. We must reset our tax structure to one that values the contribution of labour as much as the contribution of capital.” Another signatory Djaffar Shalchi stated, “People like me can afford it, it will do us no harm, and it will have a huge impact.”
Meanwhile in Spain Juan Roig, president of the country’s largest supermarket chain, Mercadona, is to donate his multi-million euro salary to the fight against coronavirus. He announced that he will contribute this year’s salary and dividends, worth an estimated €70m, to social projects to reinvigorate the Valencian and Spanish economy that has been decimated by the pandemic.
Roig and his wife, are long time patrons of a number of charitable causes. In 2019 they contributed €50m through the Legacy Project to various initiatives spanning entrepreneurship, training, sport, entertainment, art and culture. Roig was quoted as saying: “True success stems from the generosity of sharing and putting at the service of others the knowledge and resources that each one of us has”. He recently paid Mercadona’s 90,000 employees a €44m premium for their work during the Covid-19 crisis.
For Dr. Mariana Bozesan, 2019’s European female investor of the year and philanthropist, it is deeply personal. She has drawn on the lessons of her own life, as well as her experience providing much-needed funds to the vulnerable during the 2008 GFC and again in 2020. “Because I grew up extremely poor in Romania, I feel a deep calling to do whatever I can to implement the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and am especially focused on inequality, poverty, and job creation that can restore dignity and well-being at all levels of society.”
Imagine if the legacy of the COVID-19 Pandemic was to work together to build a fairer, more just world, where those who have the capital ensure that next time we face such a challenge, that those most vulnerable are already equipped with the resources and support they need. This is the World’s Story of Gratitude for The Millionaires Giving Back to Humanity. We encourage you to follow us for more Stories of Gratitude and invite you to share your story – or send a simple message of Gratitude to those behind this initiative, please visit sharegratitude.com