Interview by Dan Gregory with PANDA’s Abir Ballan

Over the past year and more, we have watched as time and again the wellbeing and basic human rights of our children have simply dropped off the Covid response agenda. And not just in the UK.

Worldwide, children and young people have been subjected to a raft of medical and non-medical interventions and deprived of their education, not because they have ever been deemed at serious personal risk from the virus but to safeguard the welfare of others.

Dan’s guest is Abir Ballan, a member of PANDA’s executive committee and the author of its Declaration for the Protection of Children and Young People. She has also written 27 children’s books in Arabic, has a psychology degree, a Masters in public health, and campaigns for the inclusion of students with learning difficulties in mainstream schools.

Dan explores with Abir what drove her to create the Declaration, which is underpinned by the belief that children and young people ‘have the right to pursue life, liberty, learning, leisure, love, and laughter’. What changes need to be made immediately to achieve this, and what would a future fit-for-purpose, child-centred pandemic response look like?

Please sign the Declaration here:

Source: Time to put our Children First


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