Childhood Detention During Covid-19 in Italy: building momentum for a comprehensive child protection agenda.

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

Abstract

Childhood detention represents an integral part of the public health response to the COVID-19 emergency. Prison conditions in Italy put detained minors at grave risk of contracting sudden acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. To date (29 April 2020), the Italian penitentiary system is housing 161 minors (147 males), most of them in pre-trial custody, as well as 50 children <3 y of age residing with their mothers in detention. Furthermore, the government reported 5265 unaccompanied minor migrants, mainly from Gambia and Egypt. The fundamental approach to be followed in childhood detention during COVID-19 is prevention of the introduction of infectious agents into detention facilities, limiting the spread within the prison and reducing the possibility of spread from the prison to the outside community. This appears challenging in countries like Italy with intense SARS-CoV-2 transmission. The current COVID-19 pandemic shows the need to provide a comprehensive childhood protection agenda, as the provision of healthcare for people in prisons and other places of detention is a state responsibility.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-2
Number of pages206
JournalInternational Health
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Aug 2020

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