The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has had an unprecedented impact in Latin America and the Caribbean. It has become the worst economic and social crisis in a century and has exposed significant structural gaps in the region’s development model. A profound transformation is necessary, eschewing the temptation to view the pandemic as an accident or a parenthesis instead of as the signal that a new direction must be taken because the world has reached what is increasingly seen as a transformative crossroads. A new social contract is needed and a new global pact must be forged. The region must shift its model towards an inclusive and sustainable development pattern that guarantees the conditions necessary for governance and in which there is a balance between economic growth, social inclusion and environmental sustainability. This balance, among other factors, will need to be sustained by political partnerships that place equality at the centre of development and sustainability, as the key to sustainable development. In the days, months and years to come, it will be imperative to strive for reconstruction and transformation with equality and sustainability.