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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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Inequality kills: The unparalleled action needed to combat unprecedented inequality in the wake of COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Nabil Ahmed; Anna Marriott; Nafkote Dabi (et al.)

Institution: Oxfam
Published: January 2022

The wealth of the  world’s 10 richest men has doubled since the pandemic began. The incomes of 99% of humanity are worse off because of COVID-19. Widening economic, gender, and racial inequalities—as well as the inequality that exists between countries—are tearing our world apart. This is not by chance, but choice: “economic violence” is perpetrated when structural policy choices are made for the richest and most powerful people. This causes direct harm to us all, and to the poorest people, women and girls, and racialized groups most. Inequality contributes to the death of at least one person every four seconds. But it is possible to radically redesign our economies to be centered on equality. It is possible to claw back extreme wealth through progressive taxation; invest in powerful, proven inequality-busting public measures; and boldly shift power in the economy and society. If we are courageous, and listen to the movements demanding change, we can create an economy in which nobody lives in poverty, nor with unimaginable billionaire wealth—in which inequality no longer kills.

The ignored pandemic: the dual crises of gender-based violence and Covid-19

AUTHOR(S)
Rowan Harvey

Institution: Oxfam
Published: November 2021

Gender Based Violence (GBV) is a global pandemic existing in all social groups across the globe, yet it has largely been ignored in the COVID-19 response and recovery plans. It is evident that the COVID-19 pandemic has intensified GBV, including domestic violence and intimate partner violence amongst other forms of violations, but the investments in GBV prevention and response are dramatically inadequate, with just 0.0002% of the overall COVID-19 response funding opportunities going into it. Barriers to achieving gender justice, such as harmful social norms, continue to exist, but progress made since the start of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign show that there are solutions, and feminist activism has been a driving force for progress on eliminating gender-based violence.

The West Africa inequality crisis: fighting austerity and the pandemic
Institution: Oxfam, Developmente Finance International
Published: October 2021
In 2019, Oxfam warned that West Africa’s governments were the least committed to reducing inequality on the continent, despite crisis levels of inequality.2 In 2021, using the Commitment to Reducing Inequality Index (CRII) framework devised by Oxfam and Development Finance International (DFI), we have found that the average West African citizen still lives under a government least committed to fighting inequality in Africa. The CRI considers public spending; progressive taxation; protection of workers; policies to support agriculture and land rights; and approaches to debt distress; and the role of international financial institutions (IFIs) like the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank While West African governments’ indifference towards inequality would be a tragedy at any time, it is more so during the COVID-19 pandemic, which is worsening inequality. On the face of it, West Africa has fared relatively well through the pandemic so far. While infections have been lower than elsewhere, it is increasingly becoming clear that the pandemic risks becoming the region’s worst economic crisis in decades, pushing millions into poverty. No end is in sight due to the obscene global vaccine inequality, which means that less than 4% of West Africans have so far been fully vaccinated.
Covid-19 and female learners in South Sudan: the impact of school closures in Juba, Rumbek, Kapoeta, Torit and Pibor
Institution: Institute of Social Policy and Research
Published: August 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting closure of South Sudan’s schools in March 2020 exacerbated many of the challenges female learners face in pursuing an education. Research found that increased poverty, domestic care work, early and forced marriage, and teenage pregnancy would make it difficult for female learners to return to schools when they reopened in May 2021. Greater financial and material support to female learners and their schools; more inclusive school environments for mothers, married or pregnant learners; and improved availability of services for learners experiencing gender-based violence, early and forced marriage or pregnancy are necessary to adequately support female learners to continue their education.
Caring under COVID-19: how the pandemic is – and is not – changing unpaid care and domestic work responsibilities in the United States

AUTHOR(S)
Brian Heilman; María Rosario Castro Bernardini; Kimberly Pfeifer

Published: December 2020

This report provides six new insights on the unfolding crisis of care, along with PL+US highlighting the need for paid leave, policy changes that are intersectional and that account for and remedy existing inequalities, and better inclusion in decision-making of those individuals with a clear view of inequalities. This report is the first in a series of similar polls in the #HowICare Project which will be published by Oxfam International in four other countries: UK, Canada, Philippines, and Kenya.

Shelter from the storm: the global need for universal social protection in times of COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Liliana Marcos Barba; Hilde van Regenmortel; Ellen Ehmke

Institution: Oxfam
Published: December 2020

As 2020 draws to a close, the economic devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic shows no sign of abating. Without urgent action, global poverty and inequality will deepen dramatically. Hundreds of millions of people have already lost their jobs, gone further into debt or skipped meals for months. Research by Oxfam and Development Pathways shows that over 2 billion people have had no support from their governments in their time of need. This study shows that none of the social protection support to those who are unemployed, elderly people, children and families provided in low- and middle-income countries has been adequate to meet basic needs. 41% of that government support was only a one-off payment and almost all government support has now stopped. Decades of social policy focused on tiny levels of means-tested support have left most countries completely unprepared for the COVID-19 economic crisis. Yet, countries such as South Africa and Bolivia have shown that a universal approach to social protection is affordable, and that it has a profound impact on reducing inequality and protecting those who need it most.

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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.