Certain groups of children, young people, and families have been disproportionately affected as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes low-income families; those living with a disability; BAME children, young people and families; parents with learning disabilities; those affected by domestic abuse; and children and young people in care.
Key issues and challenges experienced by those who have been disproportionately affected include financial hardship; food insecurity; lack of access to services; digital exclusion; and lack of access to education hubs. In order that the Scottish Government and public authorities can address the adverse impact on the rights and equalities of children, young people and families disproportionately affected by the pandemic, we recommend they must:
• Implement an urgent financial assistance scheme for low-income families
• Invest in vital third sector community-based services to ensure they can continue to support children, young people and families most affected by the pandemic
• Assess the material impact of COVID-19 on BAME communities to provide a forensic understanding of how ethnic minority children have been affected
• Introduce a digital inclusion scheme for all low-income families in Scotland
• Develop and implement a children’s rights framework for renewing and rebuilding our public services and communities in the aftermath of COVID-19
• Commit to long term funding of community-based support services
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