One in four of Jamaica’s children live in poverty and, as a result, are more exposed to health issues, more vulnerable to exploitation, have reduced access to adequate water and sanitation facilities and are more likely to be exposed to violent discipline. Girls in the poorest population quintile are also more likely to become teenage parents. An estimated 35,000 children under age 14 have a disability and are at risk of being excluded or discriminated against.
Jamaica has state-run social protection programmes, including the PATH conditional cash transfer programme. However, a significant number of deserving children still fall outside of this targeting mechanism.