NEW YORK/GENEVA, 7 March 2022 – “In the earlier week, additional than 1 million refugees have been compelled to flee Ukraine trying to get safety and defense. Hundreds of 1000’s of them are young children. Among those fleeing, numerous are unaccompanied or have been separated from their dad and mom or relatives associates.

“Youngsters without having parental care are at a heightened possibility of violence, abuse and exploitation. When these little ones are moved throughout borders, the risks are multiplied. The possibility of trafficking also soars in emergencies.

“UNICEF and UNHCR urge all neighbouring and impacted nations around the world to guarantee the speedy identification and registration of unaccompanied and divided children fleeing from Ukraine, soon after allowing for them obtain to their territory.

“States must supply protected areas for young children and family members quickly subsequent border crossings, and connection these to national baby security methods. The latest crisis also necessitates swiftly increasing the capacity of emergency treatment preparations with screened caregivers as perfectly as other essential providers for the safety of young children, together with towards gender-primarily based violence, as perfectly as household tracing and reunification mechanisms.

“For young children who have been displaced across borders without having their households, temporary foster or other neighborhood-centered care by means of a government technique gives vital protection. Adoption ought to not happen through or straight away just after emergencies. Every single effort and hard work must be built to reunify children with their households when probable, if this sort of reunification is in their finest fascination.

“Almost 100,000 youngsters, half of them with disabilities, reside in institutional care and boarding schools in Ukraine. Lots of of these young children have living relatives or lawful guardians. We have acquired studies of institutions searching for to move little ones to protection in neighbouring countries or further than. While recognizing that, below unique situations, humanitarian evacuations can be lifesaving and welcoming attempts to carry small children to security, it is significant that distinctive measures be taken in the best desire of the young children, and that the consent of their moms and dads or people responsible for their treatment be granted. Below no instances must families be separated as a end result of relocation or evacuation movements.

“People lawfully responsible for kids in establishments in Ukraine need to be certain that evacuations are accomplished in line with national authorities’ recommendations. Movements ought to be reported to qualified authorities in Ukraine and neighbouring international locations instantly upon crossing the border, and as far as doable, kids need to be evacuated with their identification papers and situation data files.

“UNHCR and UNICEF are grateful for the solidarity and readiness proven by States to assistance unaccompanied and divided kids by means of eventual relocation schemes. At the exact time, it need to be recalled that unaccompanied and divided small children are specially vulnerable and their rapid wants and safety the place they are ought to be prioritized in the small expression, when medium to extensive time period methods are identified, centered on their very best pursuits.

“UNHCR and UNICEF are fully commited to doing the job hand-in-hand to aid national authorities to guard kids, ensuring that their safety and protection are at the centre of the response.”