Measures taken under Child Protection Scheme by the Department during COVID-19 lockdown

As the pandemic COVID-19 intensified in the country it was important that urgent measures needed to be taken on priority to prevent the spread of the virus in the Child Care Institutions (CCIs). Prompt and urgent action was taken by the Social Justice Department to pre-emt emergency and disaster situation arising with regard to children for State Care.

* The CCIs were instructed to keep adequate soap/hand wash/sanitizer available to the children, display caution notice of preventive measures, provide warm drinking water to all children and staff, not allow unnecessary outing, restrict visitors, check flu-like symptoms at the nearest medical centre, co-ordinate with Doctor when required, carry out medical checkup for COVID-19 of all children and provide awareness and information on safety from the virus to the children.

* The advisory from the Ministry of Women and Child Development to discourage entry of visitors, ensure proper cleaning and frequent sanitization of the Homes, particularly of the frequently touched surfaces, regular washing of hand, covering of nose and mouth with bent elbow or tissue during coughing or sneezing, disposal of used tissues immediately was also propagated to the CCIs along with the list of DO’s and DON’Ts.

* DO’s included maintained personnel hygiene and physical distancing, wash hands even if they are visibly clean with soap and water, or alcohol-based hand drop. Maintained safe distance from a person during interaction especially with those having flu-like symptom, not to cough in the palm of the hand, check the temperature regularly, check for the respiratory symptom, calls State Helpline No. from Child Line 1098 or Ministry Help Line at 01123978046.

* DON’Ts included do not shake hands, do not touch eyes, nose or mouth. Do not spit in public. Do not travel unnecessarily to any affected region, do not participate for large gathering including seating in groups, do not spread panic or rumour.

* COVID response committee for Child Care Institution has also been constituted

* Medical check-up of all children was instructed.

* Sanitization of all Child Care Institutions has been done.

* Sanitizer and face mask has been distributed to all CCIs.

* Online counselling training has been provided to the incharge/house father/house mother of Child Care Institutions in coordination with the Health Department.

* Children are being given online counselling through watsapp, phone etc.

* Office Memorandum with Advisory has been issued by the Social Justice and Welfare Department for the safety and security of women and children in difficult circumstances in the state during the lockdown period.

* Art and Creative Writing Contest for CCI children is being carried out with the topic- 1) Art topic-LOCKDOWN and 2) Creative Writing Topic-LIFE AFTER LOCKDOWN OR HOPE FOR A CURE.

* Daily Report and weekly report on the COVID status of inmates of CCIs are being sent to the Ministry. Along with it status report for inmates from Working Women Hostel, One Stop Center, Swudhar Greh, Ujjawala Homes, Women Helpline and status on and Supplementary Nutrition are being sent to the Ministry.

* Operation of children Homes has been included in the list of exceptions (emergency services) during the lockdown period hence, the CPS section, SJ&WD has been working throughout.

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