In commemoration of World Children’s Day on November 20, UNICEF is amplifying the voices of many Filipino children experiencing various threats to the fulfilment of their rights and urges the Philippine government and society to listen to their concerns.
This year’s anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the most widely ratified human rights treaty in the world, takes place during one of the most challenging moments for the fulfilment of children’s rights in the Philippines. The COVID-19 pandemic, combined with a threatening typhoon season, have upended thousands of children’s lives and has left many more children uncertain about their future.
A UNICEF report, Averting a Lost COVID Generation, reveals data from different countries of the dire and growing consequences for children as the pandemic drags on. Globally, the number of children living in multidimensional poverty –without access to education, health, housing, nutrition, sanitation, or water is estimated to have soared to a 15 per cent increase, an additional 150 million children by mid-2020.
To address these, UNICEF recommends a Six Point Action Plan that calls on governments and partners to prioritize children’s needs. “We must listen to children and young people now, working with them to secure a better future,” UNICEF Philippines Representative Oyunsaikhan Dendevnorov says. “In the years to come, children and young people will be living with the impact of this pandemic and with the consequence of how we choose to respond. They must have a say in the decisions that will affect their future.”