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Shadow Pandemic’s radical plan to save “most children in the world”

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The new ministerial portfolio and public holiday are part of the Victorian advocacy group’s efforts to help “the world’s most closed children” recover from the effects of Covid.

Shadow Pandemic convening groups Moran Dvir and Jackie Blackwell on Friday addressed the Pandemic Accountability and Oversight Committee in the state parliament on the mental health consequences the pandemic has had on the public.

The group outlined a nine-point plan to help the children recover after they spent more than two years at home.

It includes the creation of a minister for children’s health at the state and federal levels, the Victorian Childhood Day public holiday on October 21 and legislation that will ensure that schools close last and open first in any future pandemic.

Camera iconMoran Dvir is one of the initiators of the shadow pandemic. Supplied Credit: Supplied

The role of the Minister for Children’s Health will be separated from Victoria’s portfolios in education and mental health, and the shadow pandemic argues that an “accountable person” should manage recovery.

The proposed public holiday coincides with the last closing day in 2021 and will include free family vouchers for attractions such as zoos, theme parks, restaurants and museums.

Other proposed ideas include free recreation programs for poor socioeconomic or vulnerable families, an independent group of health experts to review all public policies affecting children, and subsidized membership in community clubs and sports.

Ms. Dwire and Ms. Blackwell said they wanted to ensure that Kovid would not forever affect the lives of their children after their physical and emotional development was “irrefutably impaired”.

“We call on the Victoria government and the opposition to urgently implement a plan that focuses on children and youth and their psychological, social, economic, educational and physical recovery,” they said.

“The lives of our children should not be forever limited by decisions made by the Victoria government in 2020 and 2021.

“Let’s rebuild our children’s childhoods. Let’s put our children on the path to recovery. “

Education and Mental Health Minister James Merlin later unveiled the idea of ​​an additional public holiday and said the government is focused on helping children recover from the effects of the pandemic.

Premier Schools
Camera iconEducation and Mental Health Minister James Merlin responded to the group’s suggestions. NCA NewsWire / Luis Enrique Ascui Credit: News Corp Australia

“From a group that every day in 2021 called the government irresponsible for keeping students at home to slow the spread of the coronavirus, the call to take them out of school for another day is, frankly, ridiculous.” he said.

“We are focused on providing a genuine recovery from the pandemic for young Victorians – from the mental health of young people to individual education support programs, we make sure every young Victorian has the support they need when we go beyond these difficult years.”

Since then, The Shadow Pandemic has stated that the proposed holiday will be a day to celebrate childhood.

“As a parent lobby group, we are proud to have an open consultative process in identifying and lobbying for the best path for our children,” they said.

“The goal of Victorian Childhood Day – whether a public holiday or not – is to put our children first and bring childhood back to its rightful place.”

The group shared testimonies in state parliament last week from parents, families, teachers, doctors and allied health professionals about what the children experienced during the closure.

These included reports of eating disorders, school dropouts, anxiety and self-harm.

https://www.perthnow.com.au/news/shadow-pandemic-groups-radical-plan-for-kids-after-covid-lockdown-c-6824008

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