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Social connection during the COVID-19 crisis

The first report of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Social Integration’s Inquiry into social connection during the COVID-19 crisis has been published.

COVID-19 and the ongoing lockdown has highlighted the importance of social connection for our own wellbeing and for society as a whole. There has been an outpouring of neighbourliness and kindness. But the crisis has also brought challenges. While the Government is supporting those judged to be in clinical need, from an early stage it became clear that marginalised individuals outside this group were becoming even more isolated.  It is in this context that the APPG on Social Integration decided to hold a two-part inquiry about social connection during the COVID-19 crisis.

The report, containing the findings of part one of this inquiry, examines who is at risk of social isolation and digital exclusion, as well as the role that volunteering is playing in reaching those at risk of social isolation.  It also looks at community relations – the Inquiry received evidence of tensions in some areas, including people of Chinese heritage becoming victims of hate crime. It makes recommendations to the Government, social media companies, councils and civil society organisations.  It gathered evidence from organisations working across sectors connecting people, exploring the issues they face in reaching isolated groups and their examples of best practice. Read the report.