In an effort to address the impacts of COVID-19, companies are making a number of socially beneficial communications to the public. It is essential
that these communications avoid harmful stereotypes and seek to depict positive and progressive gender portrayals. This document provides considerations for corporate entities currently creating socially beneficial communications.

The unprecedented consequences of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak are being felt around the world. Beyond the immediate public health risks of COVID-19, many women, children and their families are caught in a fast-evolving situation that has disrupted education and childcare, threatened protection from or treatment of all types of illnesses, and led to immediate or impending loss of household income. Restrictions on movement and the socioeconomic fallout of the crisis put women and children at heightened risk of abuse, neglect and violence.1 Moreover, access to vital sexual and reproductive health and other health-care services is in jeopardy, while risks of domestic violence are increasing, along with the likelihood of child marriage and early pregnancy.

The COVID-19 outbreak is heavily affecting the labour market and the economy, including global supply chains, leading to widespread business disruptions. Loss of jobs and income, and rising poverty, are rapidly becoming a reality for many more workers.2 The absence of adequate social protection systems further exacerbates the vulnerability of working families, and especially women, who make up a disproportionate percentage of the informal labour force.

For families at the front line of the response, there is heightened risk of exposure to illness, pressure of longer work hours, stress and mental trauma, which all have implications for children and other family members. In the health and social sectors worldwide, women constitute 70 per cent of workers, are less likely than men to have full-time employment, and face a significant gender pay gap.3

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