Social Rights: Impact of the Covid 19 Crisis on the Youngest and the Eldest
The youngest and oldest generations of our society were hit particularly hard by the effects of the Covid 19 pandemic. This is pointed out in the policy brief on “Social Rights in the Pandemic” published by the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Fundamental and Human Rights.
In September 2022, a policy brief on “Social Rights in the Pandemic- Impact of the Covid-19 Crisis on the Youngest and the Oldest” was published. Karin Lukas and Vincent Perle of the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Fundamental and Human Rights (LBI-GMR) examined the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on social human rights in Europe in cooperation with the Network Science of the Chamber of Labour. The legal basis for this are the social rights enshrined in the (revised) European Social Charter (RESC) for Austria and 42 other European states, which are binding under international law.
The core message of the policy brief is that the Covid 19 crisis had a particularly negative impact on the youngest and oldest people in the European population.
In relation to children, adolescents and young adults, the following outcomes were found:
- Children and young people are disproportionately affected by poverty. A further increase in child poverty must be expected in the following years.
- The closure of educational institutions had a strong negative impact, especially on the primary and secondary school sector.
- Young workers were affected much more by the labour market crisis than the average.
- The pandemic and the measures imposed led to a massive deterioration in the mental health of the younger generation.
The Covid 19 crisis also had a negative impact on the elderly:
- The health of older people suffered the most from the pandemic.
- Due to the restricted access to health services, those who were already struggling with health or economic problems before the pandemic were affected the most.
- The economic situation of pensioners, who already had financial problems before the crisis, deteriorated particularly.
Due to all these serious impacts, as well as the current inflation and energy crisis, a policy response is needed. This should prevent the youngest and oldest sections of the population from suffering disproportionately from the effects.
The German version of the policy brief on “Social Rights in the Pandemic- Impact of the Covid-19 Crisis on the Youngest and Oldest” can be found in the download section.