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Commissioner's Covid 19 Blog

The Commissioner has written a blog and accompanying Vlog to highlight some of the issues effecting children and young people and their families during Covid 19. Given the evolving nature of the pandemic she will update the blog as the situation develops and new trends and issues emerge:

Blog (15 May 2020) - 'How Covid 19 is affecting children in NI'

Nearly two months into the Covid crisis, we are all experiencing the changing situation differently. It is also difficult to imagine what the “new normal” will be. This piece is intended to give an overview of the areas that NICCY has been focussing on since the lockdown began and as we, and especially children, continue to endure it.  It is apparent that Covid-19 will have an impact on the lives of all of children and young people for some time and therefore NICCY will continue to monitor this situation.

It is apparent that it is not business as usual but that does not mean that the rights of our children and young people are in lockdown.  It does, however, mean that they may be experiencing them differently.  Domestic (such as the Human Rights Act) and International Human Rights Legislation and instruments like the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) are just as important now as they ever were, if not more so in some cases.  The Covid-19 guidance recently issued by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child covers a broad range of issues and serves as a clear reminder of the core activities and services necessary to safeguard the rights and best interests of children and young people.  NICCY will be using it to inform our work during the crisis and in the months afterwards to identify relevant learning, realisation and breaches of children’s rights.

I made a statement on the 1st of April highlighting that we must not ignore “vulnerable” children.  In the intervening weeks, I am thankful that I have seen no evidence that the system is “ignoring” these children but I continue to be concerned that there is still a lot to do and children are struggling in ways that we may not know about.

Issues and Areas of Concern.

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