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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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COVID-19 and youth violence: views from the frontline

AUTHOR(S)
Carole Gibbs; Alaina De Biasi; Jennifer E. Cobbina-Dungy (et al.)

Published: May 2022   Journal: Journal of Crime and Justice
Violent crime tends to be concentrated in economically disadvantaged, racially minoritized communities, particularly among youth. Emerging research suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic may have exacerbated the drivers of violence in these communities but provides limited insight into its effects in a single locale, especially small to mid-size cities, and on those on the frontlines of youth violence (i.e., youth service workers). The current study provides an in-depth, qualitative examination of these dynamics in vulnerable neighborhoods in Lansing, Michigan, centering the voices of those instrumental to violence prevention and community resilience. Specifically, it explores youth service providers’ perceptions of how COVID-19 changed youth violence and impacted families, communities, and organizations working to prevent and control youth violence. It uses the socioecological model adopted by the public health field to explain and prevent violence to guide our work, as this framework recognizes the interlocking and interactive effects of systemic, community, and relational experiences on youth behavior.
COVID-19 and juvenile probation: a qualitative examination of emergent challenges and useful strategies

AUTHOR(S)
Ashley Lockwood; Jill Viglione; Jennifer H. Peck

Published: October 2021   Journal: Criminal Justice and Behavior
The emergence of COVID-19 placed immediate pressure on the juvenile justice system to adapt to changes in case processing and decision-making practices. Juvenile probation agencies were tasked with quickly altering their policies and practice to abide by local public health measures. As probation supervision is the most common disposition in the juvenile justice system, there is both an empirical and practical need to understand the impact that COVID-19 has on a variety of issues surrounding the supervision and provision of services for juveniles. Using self-report survey data from juvenile probation directors across the United States, the current study examines (a) the biggest challenges faced by juvenile probation agencies during the pandemic, (b) the strategies implemented in response to these challenges, and (c) the most pressing issues currently facing the field of juvenile community corrections. Results have the potential to inform future agency decision-making when adjusting juvenile probation policy and practice.
The pandemic paused the US school-to-prison pipeline: potential lessons learned

AUTHOR(S)
Sarah Y. Vinson; Randee J. Waldman

Published: September 2020   Journal: The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health
A global pandemic caused society to radically and quickly reconfigure. Schools, wary of the health risks of in-person instruction, shifted to virtual learning. Although not ideal in many respects, this shift placed adolescents in the USA out of the reach of harsh school disciplinary procedures (ie, zero tolerance policies, out-of-school suspensions, expulsions, and law enforcement referrals), contributing to a drastic reduction in juvenile court referrals nationally. The school-to-prison pipeline paused. Characterised by school disciplinary approaches placing adolescents on a trajectory to juvenile and then adult criminal legal systems, this pipeline is most pronounced for Black and Latinx students, students with disabilities, and in schools serving impoverished communities. Although this survey focuses mainly on the USA, this topic has relevance in other societies with public education, substantial income inequality, and racial inequities in their justice systems.
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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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Read the latest quarterly digest on children and disabilities.

The second digest discussed children and violence during the pandemic.

The first digest covers children and youth mental health under COVID-19.

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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.