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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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Age-varying associations between Chinese American parents' racial–ethnic socialization and children's difficulties during the COVID-19 pandemic

Huiguang Ren; Charissa S. L. Cheah; Xiaoli Zong (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Asian American Journal of Psychology
Parental racial–ethnic socialization (RES) can be an important resource for Chinese American youth as they navigate the highly racialized and Sinophobic context of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. This study used time-varying association models to examine Chinese American parents’ engagement in six types of racial–ethnic socialization (RES) practices during the COVID-19 pandemic and their associations with child difficulties across child ages 4–18 years and child gender. Five hundred Chinese American parents (Mage = 43.5 years, SD = 6.5; 79% mothers) with 4–18-year-old children (Mage = 11.7 years, SD = 3.9; 48% girls) reported on their RES practices and children’s adjustment difficulties. Parents’ use of maintenance of heritage culture and cultural pluralism RES did not vary for children at different ages, whereas they used more awareness of discrimination RES for older children than younger children.
Latina mothers navigating COVID-19: within- and between-family stress processes over time

Chase J. Boyer; Elisa Ugarte; Andrea C. Buhler-Wassmann (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Family Relations

This study aimed to understand how periodic shifts in financial cutbacks and fears of contracting COVID-19 contributed to children's externalizing behaviors due to increases in maternal stress among low-income Latina mothers during the first 10 months of the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic caused widespread health, economic, and psychological consequences for families and children. The Latino community is particularly vulnerable to the economic and health risks of this pandemic as a consequence of systemic oppression. The family stress model suggests that these family stressors will have psychological repercussions to parents, and downstream behavioral consequences to children.

Adding fuel to the fire? Examining exposure to potentially stressful or traumatic events before and during the COVID-19 pandemic in low-income, Black families

Austen B. McGuire; Yo Jackson; Jennifer McDonald

Published: August 2022   Journal: Psychological Trauma
The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the lives of many individuals. While emerging evidence has begun to document health (e.g., infection) and financial (e.g., job loss) consequences, less is known about the day-to-day experiences of some of the country’s most vulnerable populations. The current study sought to address this gap in understanding by examining exposure to potentially stressful or traumatic experiences (PSTEs) and their relation to mental health among predominately low-income, African American/Black individuals.
Parents' perspectives regarding anti-Asian racism during COVID-19: supporting elementary students at school

Cixin Wang; Charissa Cheah; Jia Li Liu (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: School Psychology Review
A surge of racism and xenophobia toward Asian Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic has led to high levels of stress within this community. In-depth semistructured interviews were conducted with 40 Chinese American parents (35 mothers, Mage = 40.86; SD = 5.59) with elementary school-aged children (Mage = 8.76; SD= 2.17) to understand parents’ perception of their children’s experiences with discrimination and how schools can support Asian American students. Interviews were coded using thematic analyses. The majority of parents (n = 28, 70%) expressed concerns about racial discrimination for their children. However, 28 (70%) parents did not have any specific discussions about racism and discrimination with their children partially because parents felt that the topic of race/racial discrimination was too complex for children to understand. Some parents (22.5%) were also worried that too much discussion about race and discrimination would trigger more discrimination.
The forgotten youth: responding to mental health needs among confined youth in the time of COVID-19

Mythili Sanikommu; Rebecca L. Fix

Published: July 2022   Journal: Health Promotion Practice
As COVID-19 sweeps across the country, individuals within the carceral system face an increased risk of contracting the virus, and as a result, heightened risk for mental health symptoms. This paper discusses how COVID-19 appears to be exacerbating mental health inequities for children within the carceral system and the need to respond accordingly. Children within the carceral system represent a particularly vulnerable population, and the majority of detained or confined youth identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC). As juvenile detention centers in multiple states report cases of COVID-19, children who are confined are experiencing higher rates of illness and fear of illness. It is crucial to consider how the mental health of children who are confined will be disproportionately affected compared with the general population.
Development of a theory-based, culturally appropriate message library for use in interventions to promote COVID-19 vaccination among African Americans: formative research

Jennifer Cunningham-Erves; Heather M. Brandt; Maureen Sanderson (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: JMIR Formative Research

Disparities in COVID-19 incidence, hospitalization, and mortality rates among African Americans suggest the need for targeted interventions. Use of targeted, theory-driven messages in behavioral and communication interventions could empower African Americans to engage in behaviors that prevent COVID-19. To address this need, a formative study was performed aiming to develop and design a culturally appropriate, theory-based library of messages targeting concerns around COVID-19 vaccines that could be used in behavioral and communication interventions for African Americans.

The impact of COVID-19-associated discrimination on anxiety and depression symptoms in Asian American adolescents

Hulya Ermis-Demirtas; Ye Luo; Yun-Ju Huang

Published: July 2022   Journal: International Perspectives in Psychology
Given the potential adverse impact of COVID-19-associated discrimination (CAD) targeting Asian Americans, we investigated the relationship between online and in-person CAD and mental health outcomes in a sample of East and Southeast Asian American (ESEAA) high school students (n = 114).
"Wearing a mask won't protect us from our history": the impact of COVID‐19 on black children and families

Erin Bogan; Valerie N. Adams-Bass; Lori A. Francis (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: Social Policy Report
The data on COVID-19 show an irrefutable and disturbing pattern: Black Americans are contracting and dying from COVID-19 at rates that far exceed other racial and ethnic groups. Due to historical and current iterations of racism, Black Americans have been forced into conditions that elevate their risk for COVID-19 and consequently place Black children at the epicenter of loss across multiple domains of life. The current paper highlights the impact of the pandemic on Black children at the individual, family, and school levels. Based on an understanding of the influence of structural racism on COVID-19 disparities, policy recommendations are provided that focus on equitable access to quality education, home ownership, and employment to fully address the needs of Black children and families during and after the pandemic. Research, practice, and policy recommendations are made to journal editors, funding agencies, grant review panels, and researchers regarding how research on COVID-19 should be framed to inform intervention efforts aimed at improving the situation of Black children and families.
Future directions on BIPOC youth mental health: the importance of cultural rituals in the COVID-19 pandemic

José M. Causadias; Lucía Alcalá; Kamryn S. Morris (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology
Culture plays an important role in the development of mental health, especially during childhood and adolescence. However, less is known about how participation in cultural rituals is related to the wellbeing of youth who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), and part of the Global Majority. This is crucial amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a global event that has disproportionally affected BIPOC youth and disrupted participation in rituals. The goal of this paper is to promote advances in clinical child and adolescent psychology focused on rituals. It begins by defining culture and rituals and examining their role on development. It illustrates these issues with the Lunar New Year in China, Maya rituals in México, Ramadan in Turkey, and Black graduations and Latinx funerals in the United States. It discusses how the pandemic has affected participation in these rituals and their potential impact on BIPOC children and adolescents’ mental health.
Intersectionality in pandemic youth suicide attempt trends

Katherine McCoy

Published: June 2022   Journal: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in increased distress at a societal level, with youth and young people bearing a disproportionate burden. A series of recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports has highlighted emergency department (ED) visit rates for suicide attempts among youth ages 12–25 during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study expands those analyses by adding race and ethnicity to the examination of suspected suicide attempts among youth. This study uses National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) data for Wisconsin from hospitals that consistently reported ED visits between the study period of January 1, 2019 and September 30, 2021. Suspected suicide attempt visits were identified using the CDC-developed suicide attempt query.

Household and social characteristics associated with COVID-19 vaccine intent among Latino families in the San Francisco Bay Area

Janet M. Wojcicki; Milagro Escobar; Andrea DeCastro Mendez

Published: June 2022   Journal: BMC Infectious Diseases

Latinos have had higher case counts, hospitalization rates and deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic nationally and in the state of California. Meanwhile, Latino vaccination rates remain lower than those of non-Hispanic Whites. COVID-19 vaccine nonintent, defined as intent to not vaccinate against COVID-19, among Latino individuals continues to be an issue in the state of California. Families from three Latino longitudinal mother–child cohorts previously recruited in the San Francisco Bay Area were surveyed telephonically from February to June 2021 to assess attitudes towards vaccination against COVID-19 and prior vaccination, in general, for themselves and their children. Risk for vaccine nonintent was assessed using the Mann–Whitney rank sum non-parametric test for continuous predictors and chi-squared tests for categorical ones.

Disparity in built environment and its impacts on youths' physical activity behaviors during COVID-19 pandemic restrictions

Xiangli Gu; Jean Keller; Tao Zhang (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Journal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities

Guided by the social ecological model, this study aimed to examine the relations of built environments (i.e., walking/cycling infrastructure, recreation facilities, neighborhood safety/crime), youth’s transition abilities, and changes of youth’s physical activity (PA) and play behaviors due to COVID-19-based restrictions. Ethnic and socioeconomic status (SES) disparities were also examined on studies variables during the COVID-19 restrictions. A cross-sectional research design was used to assess an anonymous online survey completed by US parents/guardians. The final sample had 1324 children and adolescents (Meanage = 9.75; SD = 3.95; 51.3% girls), and 35.5% the families were of upper socioeconomic class (income > $150,000). Parents reported the perceived built environment and neighborhood safety, child’s PA and play behaviors during COVID-19 pandemic shelter-in-place restrictions.

Asian American parents' experiences of stress, discrimination, and mental health during COVID-19

Cindy Y. Huang; William Tsai

Published: May 2022   Journal: Families, Systems, & Health
COVID-19 has placed Asian Americans (AA) at higher risk for discrimination within the U.S. This exacerbates the mental health distress of AA parents, who are also experiencing COVID-19-related stress (e.g., health, financial, work, childcare). The risk factors associated with mental health outcomes for AA parents are not well understood. This brief report examined the relationships among COVID-19 stress, discrimination, and psychological distress of AA parents during the initial months of the pandemic. Baseline data of an ongoing longitudinal examination into the COVID-19 experiences of AA parents and their families were utilized. Participants were 166 AA parents of children ages 2–19 years. They completed an online survey about their experiences of COVID-19-related stress (i.e., childcare, school, work), discrimination, and psychological distress.
Risks and protective factors of Hispanic families and their young children during the COVID-19 pandemic

Natasha Cabrera; Minxuan He; Yu Chen (et al.)

Published: May 2022   Journal: Children
This study examines the risk-related factors during the pandemic and protective factors that might reduce its effects on family functioning in a sample of 161 low-income Hispanic parents in the United States, recruited from an ongoing longitudinal intervention study. They were surveyed about family functioning six months into the pandemic. The study focused on the associations between social (e.g., exposure to the virus) and economic (e.g., job loss) pandemic-related risks on parental stress, parenting, and children’s socioemotional problems and skills, as well as the degree to which coparenting support, parents’ positivity, economic support, and access to services and information mitigated (protected) the negative effects of these stressors on family functioning.
COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among minoritised youth in Cleveland, Ohio, United States

Jillian Schulte; Megan Schmidt-Sane; Elizabeth Benninger (et al.)

Published: May 2022
Despite progress in COVID-19 vaccination rates overall in Cleveland, vaccine inequity persists as young people from minoritised communities are often less likely to be vaccinated. Despite being over-represented in COVID-19 case counts and fatalities, Black residents were under-represented in COVID-19 vaccination during the first year and half of the pandemic. In Ohio, while roughly 60% of Cuyahoga County residents are fully vaccinated, just 45% of Cleveland residents are fully vaccinated. Lower-income, majority Black, east side neighbourhoods have markedly lower vaccination rates compared to higher-income, mostly white neighbourhoods. Young people ages 16-40 became eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine on March 29th, 2021, and individuals aged 12 and above were able to get vaccinated from May 2021 onward. However, large disparities exist based age, race, and zip code. This brief illustrates underlying reasons shaping COVID-19 vaccine attitudes among minority (especially Black and Latinx) youth (ages 12-18) and offers key considerations for how young people can be better engaged within Cleveland, Ohio. This brief is based on research, including in-depth interviews and focus group discussions with 61 young people across 16 neighbourhoods through a Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR) approach in Cleveland to contextualise youth perspectives of COVID-19 vaccination and highlight areas of hesitancy and confidence.
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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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