Get our newsletter delivered directly to your inbox
I have already subscribed | Do not show this message again
Your email has been successfully registered.
During the decade 2010-2019, storms caused 895,000 new displacements of children in the Caribbean and 297,000 in Central America.
Many of the 70 million children affected in Latin America by the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in Central America and the Caribbean, are at risk of the worsening effects of the present hurricane season, the United Nation´s Children Fund (UNICEF) warned on Monday.
“In the coming days and weeks, children and families will be at risk of being hit simultaneously by two disasters, COVID-19 and hurricanes,” said Bernt Aasen, UNICEF Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean.
“This is the perfect storm we fear for the Caribbean and Central America. As we continue to take precautions to keep families safe from COVID-19, efforts to prepare for a hurricane now are vital to mitigate the spread of the virus among the most vulnerable communities,” the official warned.
As The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecasted that in 2020 there is a 60 percent chance this hurricane season will have extraordinary activity, the UNICEF that the pandemic is already straining national and local health systems that would not resist the aftermath devastating hurricanes.
In the coming days and weeks, children and families will be at risk of being hit simultaneously by two disasters, #COVID19 and a stronger hurricane season.
Displacement and service interruption caused by storms could leave children and families more vulnerable to virus.
According to UNICEF, there are about 43 million people in the 29 Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in the Caribbean, and 12.6 million of them are minors.
The organization highlights that over recent years this group has become one of the most vulnerable populations on the planet as a result of drought, storms, and flooding, which have gained intensity.
Notably, the organization highlights that in the decade 2010-2019, storms caused 895,000 new displacements of children in the Caribbean and 297,000 in Central America.
However, this year poses a more significant challenge for the protection of those children since there has been projected an average of 15 named storms, including eight hurricanes, as well as four major hurricanes.
In this sense, the United Nations organization urged governments to prepare and adapt its natural disasters strategies to the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic taking into account that forced displacement and poverty unleashed by the hurricanes will contribute to the spreading of the disease.