Child protection risks in times of the COVID-19 pandemic
Children who are particularly vulnerable include:
- Any child at risk of, or exposed to, any form of violence – including domestic violence and sexual and gender-based violence
- Children exposed to all forms of exploitation – including the worst forms of child labour, trafficking and sexual exploitation
- Displaced children – including those exposed to additional vulnerability if not provided access to child-sensitive asylum procedures
- Children separated, or at risk of being separated, from their primary caregivers
- Children in detention – including those in immigration detention
- Street connected children
- Child-headed households
- Children with disabilities
- Children associated with armed forces or groups, or involved in armed violence such as gangs
- Children without appropriate documentation including birth registration
- Children at risk of on-line exploitation
- Children living with, or affected by, HIV and AIDS, and children suffering from other serious diseases
- Married children, children at risk of child marriage, and children who are pregnant
- Children with diverse gender identity and/or expression
- Children living in institutional settings that have been rapidly closed and, as a result, returned to families and communities without due preparation
- Children at risk of losing other forms of alternative care placements
- Children in alternative care confined in large groups in institutional settings where infection can easily spread. These children are also noted to be at considerable risk of abuse, neglect and exploitation. Also children with disabilities in institutional care settings who, due to specific pre-existing conditions or impairments, including immune deficiencies, may be at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 and being more severely affected by it
- Children and young people who have transitioned out of alternative care into semi-independent or independent living now at heightened risk of isolation and separation from peers whilst also lacking access to financial and other forms of support for their daily needs
- Children who experience stigma and social discrimination
- Children who have survived the disease but may be rejected by their family or community.
DiscussionIn the comments section below perhaps you can tell us if there are other children who are facing protection risks in the communities you serve which have been made worse as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We would like to hear which country you are writing about, but please also be mindful of confidentiality and the right to privacy of other people. Remember you can “like” comments if you agree with what’s been said or if you have found something particularly interesting, or you can “reply” to comments to initiate a conversation. The ‘See Also’ section below has links to other reading material that may be of interest to you.
COVID-19: Adapting Child Protection Case Management
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