Current evidence from across the world indicates that children have largely been spared the severe illness and mortality affecting adults as a result of Covid-19. Yet, there are growing concerns that children are bearing the brunt of this pandemic.
As South Africa marks Child Protection Week, we should focus attention on issues of child protection and safety. Children face two pandemics, sexual violence and Covid-19, and remain excluded from national conversations. We do not know what is happening to them.
The Covid-19 pandemic is having far reaching and devasting human, social and economic effects across the globe. Many countries have imposed lockdown measures, confining people to their homes to curb the spread of the virus and reduce the loss of lives. Potentially, creating the perfect storm for the surge of another pandemic – violence against women and children.
A submission was made to the Ministers of Finance; Social Development; and Women, Youth and People with Disabilities on the social grant component of the disaster relief package. The submission, signed by a coalition of socio-economic experts, economists and prominent NGOs, calls on Cabinet to “reconsider the manner in which the allocation of social relief grants will occur, bearing in mind the necessity of an urgent pro-poor response that protects children, the unemployed, and the informal sector