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69% surveyed said girls in developing countries at greater risk than boys
Center for Global Development
WASHINGTON - School closures in response to COVID-19 are putting girls in developing countries at a substantial risk of gender-based violence, early pregnancy, and dropping out once schools reopen, according to a new survey from the Center for Global Development (CGD).
The survey includes responses from 98 staff at 82 different NGOs and other organizations that provide education services in at least 32 countries. About half the organizations were based on the African continent, with the rest concentrated across Asia, Latin America, and elsewhere. The organizations include school operators, other education providers, and groups that focus on children’s rights, childcare, gender equality, health, and more.
69% of respondents at education organizations said that school closures will disproportionately affect girls. Furthermore,
78% of respondents cited increased exposure to gender-based violence during school closures as an important or very important concern.
69% ranked girls not returning to school once they reopen as an important or very important concern.
68% ranked early marriage and pregnancy among school-age girls during the pandemic as an important or very important concern.
Of those respondents who believed girls would be disproportionately affected, 52% cited increased care responsibilities at home during the pandemic as a barrier to girls' studies, widening the gender education gap.
“COVID-19 obviously presents immediate health needs that countries and donors need to deal with. But it’s also critically important to not lose sight of the gendered risks it creates. The evidence is clear that, from violence to care work, girls are disproportionately affected by school closures. Governments need to support the efforts of frontline organizations working to address these risks,” said Maryam Akmal, senior policy analyst at CGD and an author of the report.
As COVID school closures have increased risks for children, it’s also curtailed the ability of some education organizations to respond. Nearly half (42%) of education service providers say their budgets have been slashed, with most of those (73%) reporting cuts by private donors and philanthropies as donors shifts their focus. 33% of respondents said their organizations anticipate layoffs of frontline staff. Despite the financial and operational disruptions, 89% of respondents report planning and delivering additional interventions during the pandemic.
“Education organizations are on the front lines helping deal with the risks introduced by the pandemic, risks which disproportionately affect girls. But just as the pandemic is heightening the risks for girls, budget cuts are hurting the organizations that could help mitigate them. There are pressing needs across the board, but international donors and governments need to step up and ensure that girls don’t get left behind,” said Megan O’Donnell, assistant director for gender at CGD and an author of the report.
The report of the study is available here, along with the survey data: https://www.cgdev.org/publication/gendered-impacts-covid-19-school-closures-insights-frontline-organizations.
Prashant Yadav speaks to AP News about PPE distribution during COVID-19. From the article:
With a loud whir and a whoosh, a fixed-wing drone slingshots out of a medical warehouse, zips through hazy skies at 80 mph, pops open a belly hatch and drops a box of medical supplies. Slowed by a little parachute, the box drifts downward and lands with a plop, less than 8 minutes after launch.
For North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Basil Yap, it is a eureka moment.The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the deadly consequences of fractured medical supply chains. Drones, said Yap, may be part of the solution. Proponents say they eliminate the need for delivery trucks and avoid human contact....
Prashant Yadav, a senior fellow at the D.C.-based Center for Global Development who focuses on global health supply chains and forecasting, said today’s efforts will be useful in preparation for future disasters.
“Even if today we can send personal protective equipment via trucks, there may be other threats or a future pandemic which could cause other disruptions, so it’s good to be prepared for this,” he said.
“Will this become the widespread way of PPE distribution to hospitals? Probably not anytime in the near future, but it could become useful for lab test delivery in many different ways, specifically the turnaround time for lab tests.”
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Liliana Rojas-Suarez, Senior Fellow at the Center for Global Development (CGD) and Chair of the Latin American Committee on Macroeconomic and Financial Issues (CLAAF), released the following statement in reaction to Carmen Reinhart’s selection as Chief Economist and Vice President of the World Bank Group. Reinhart is a Member of CLAAF:
“Congratulations to Carmen Reinhart on being appointed as Chief Economist and Vice President of the World Bank Group. As a member of The Latin American Committee on Macroeconomic and Financial Issues (CLAAF), Carmen’s contributions to our meetings and statements have been invaluable over the years. Her passion for understanding the most pressing economic and financial issues of emerging markets and developing countries brought richness and depth to CLAAF discussions and proceedings. Carmen is a world top-scholar widely recognized for her insatiable commitment to 'get the facts right.' At CLAAF we are proud of her and excited and clear-eyed about the challenges she is about to face as she takes her new position at the world’s most difficult time in a century. Carmen’s work and experiences over the last 30 years have greatly prepared her to succeed.”
The Center for Global Development (CGD) supports The Latin American Committee on Macroeconomic and Financial Issues (CLAAF). https://claaf.org/information/
Charles Kenny is cited in a Washington Post article on digital nomads during COVID-19. From the article:
When Dree Ziegler arrived in Koh Tao for a scuba diving course, she anticipated a short stay on the Gulf of Thailand resort island. It was the middle of March. The coronavirus had the world’s attention by then; much of the United States was enduring a gray, wet month and watching an inkblot spread of infection in Asia and Europe.
Amid the islands of southern Thailand, though, perpetual sun made the pandemic seem distant. The headlines belonged to crowded cities, not the gulf’s ivory-colored beaches and vivid coral. But three days after Ziegler reached Koh Tao, the State Department raised the global threat level to 4, its most serious travel advisory...
“This virus does not respect borders,” World Health Organization Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in February. Historically, in fact, pandemics helped create modern borders, as Charles Kenny wrote in a March 25 article for Politico. “The Black Death is the first time in history that we’ve seen what I think you could call border controls,” said Kenny, a senior fellow at the Center for Global Development.
From the article:
“…As global financial leaders prepare for this week’s meetings, the initial focus of the debt standstill talks is a 76-nation group of the world’s poorest countries. The IMF and World Bank want rich country governments to agree to allow countries such as Rwanda, Cambodia and Haiti to delay their debt payments.
‘Going into this crisis, the low-income countries had high levels of debt. … Now this is likely to push a number of them over the edge,’ said Nancy Lee, a senior policy fellow at the Center for Global Development.
By rescheduling debt service payments due by the end of 2022, almost $33 billion could be made available for these countries to devote to battling the pandemic. If private bondholders and banks also were brought on board, the total would swell by an additional $18 billion, according to Lee.
At the IMF, Georgieva is the rare economist who can boast of having studied at both the Karl Marx Higher Institute of Economics and MIT. As the pandemic gathered steam, she overhauled the fund’s sometimes lethargic procedures and ordered a halt to nonessential activities.
‘Everything that is not critical for fighting this crisis is set aside,” she said. “ … We have to eradicate [the pandemic] everywhere for the world to breathe a sigh of relief…’”
From the article:
"...Indeed, a 2001 research report from the National Institute of Justice found that rates of violence in couples experiencing high levels of financial stress were 3 1/2 times the rates in couples with low levels of stress — rising to 9.5 percent from 2.7 percent. According to a working paper by the Center for Global Development, the effects of unemployment on IPV vary across populations due to cultural differences, but in the U.S., the NIJ found in 2009 that periods of unemployment by a man in a heterosexual relationship are correlated with significantly elevated rates of abuse. That paper didn’t show a causal link but found that couples in which the man was employed had a 4.7 percent prevalence of abuse, while that figure was 7.5 percent for couples in which the man experienced one period of unemployment and 12.3 percent for couples in which the man experienced two or more periods of unemployment..."
From the article:
“…Now, firms such as iRespond and Simprints - a UK-based nonprofit that develops biometric IDs for health and humanitarian use - are adapting their technology for the next steps.
More than 1 billion people worldwide have no way of proving their identity, according to the World Bank.
This will present a massive challenge for governments trying to ascertain who has received the vaccine, said Prashant Yadav, a senior fellow at the U.S.-based Center for Global Development.
‘The initial COVID-19 vaccine supply will be limited, so it will be essential to verify each dose reaches a real patient. Corruption, leakage, and even accidental duplication waste precious supply and are deadly,’ he said.’
Biometric digital IDs can be a gamechanger. They can help governments target population segments e.g. healthcare professionals or elderly population, verify people who have received vaccination, and have a clear record,’ he said…”