Children on the Move in the context of COVID-19
Event organized by Human Rights Funders Network and UNICEF
Ensuring appropriate care and protection for children on the move in Northern Central America, Mexico, and the US in the context of COVID-19
Even before the pandemic, children and families from Central America and Mexico have been literally fighting for their lives amidst violence, exploitation, persecution, extreme poverty, a stifling lack of access to education, social services and livelihood options. COVID-19 has amplified the harrowing dangers for children in this already strained region, where nascient health and child protection systems have struggled to gain a foothold. Against this backdrop, children and families who had been pushed to migrate north in search of safety and opportunity, now face border closures, reduced access to international protection, continued use of child immigration detention, and the forced returns of at least 2,000 children from the United States and Mexico. Realities like these reinforce the reality that the COVID-19 crisis is a child rights crisis.
Please join us for this 60-minute webinar with UNICEF experts focused on prioritizing the rights and safety of migrant children in response to the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. Topics to be covered include:
- The impacts of COVID-19 and recent policies on children along the North American migratory route that exacerbate existing protection risks to children.
- Immediate and longer-term interventions already underway that provide some promising examples of what’s possible.
- Ways forward in the region for addressing root causes and shifting investments to prioritize child protection, such as strengthening child protection systems in countries of origin to supporting family- and community-based care and mental health psychosocial support.
- Reflections on the longer-term impacts and priorities related to this issue in the region.
Facilitated by Rhonda Fleischer, Program Specialist for Migration at UNICEF. Moderated by Camille Serrano at Human Rights Funders Network (HRFN) and Heather Hamilton at Elevate Children Funders Group (ECFG).