Kathleen Funchion TD welcomes report highlighting impact of Covid-19 on disadvantaged children and young people
Sinn Féin Spokesperson for Children and Youth Kathleen Funchion TD has welcomed the publication of data by the Irish Youth Foundation that shows children and young people living in disadvantaged circumstances have been disproportionality impacted by the pandemic.
Teachta Funchion said:
"Today's report highlights the significant challenges that children and young people have faced during the pandemic.
“The world as children know it has fundamentally changed.
"As outlined clearly in this report, from the perspective of social workers, children from disadvantaged areas are struggling with their long-term mental health, social skills, resilience and behaviour.
"The report also emphasises the importance of investment in youth services through one to one counselling and enhanced intervention supports. Extended absences from school and long periods of isolation, inactivity and a lack of structure is of particular concern for the long-term mental health of young people.
“The closure of all juvenile sports, dance, music and other extra curricula activities has also disproportionality affected disadvantaged children.
“Children in one parent homes, or experiencing homelessness or domestic violence, those living in direct provision or young people struggling with addiction and substance abuse have been disproportionally affected by a loss of contact with the outside world.
“Inequalities already experienced by many vulnerable and disadvantaged children in the Irish Traveller community, the Roma and migrant communities have been accelerated. As services and supports were temporarily removed or closed during the pandemic vulnerable children felt the impact of the pandemic the most.
“Today’s announcement by the government of their recovery plan makes no provision for early years and services for young people. This government needs to get serious about investing in young people and children."