Children’s Law Center Policy Attorney Tami Weerasingha-Cote shared testimony before the Committee on Health regarding the public health element of the District’s COVID-19 response. We work with many children and families in the District whose social and economic circumstances make them especially vulnerable to the direct and indirect impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although children appear to be at lower risk for severe COVID-19 infections based on the limited research to date, fallout from the pandemic has given rise to significant negative behavioral health effects in children. Considering that most mental health disorders begin in childhood, the psychological issues stemming from this pandemic can have lasting health and economic impacts on the DC population if the behavioral health needs of children and families are not adequately addressed in a timely manner. As DC continues to develop and implement its public health response to COVID-19, it is critical that this response includes appropriate, timely, and high-quality behavioral health services for all children in the District.
Read her full testimony here: