SAN DIEGO — Experts are now sounding the alarm on the effects the pandemic has had on children the last two years. 

The Episcopal Community Services held a panel discussion Wednesday talking about the trend in developmental issues community organizations are now seeing.  

“They are seeing a lot more of developmental delays in children, higher rates of chronic conditions, obesity, children aren’t outside playing as much as they used too – so these are really true concerns that we are seeing in our young children right now,” said Alethea Arguilez, executive director for First 5 San Diego.  

The focus of the panel was to let community members know the consequences of the pandemic and what they can do moving forward.  

“Even pre-pandemic, they were trying to figure out: do they take a trip to the grocery store or pay for rent? And the things that we saw were exacerbated,” said Erin Hegeboom, director of policy and strategy for San Diego Every Child.  

The ECS wants the take away from the panel discussion to be that the pandemic affected some more than others.    

“We want to succeed as a whole, so in order for us to do that, we need to identify the people that were in a different boat, the people that were struggling more than others, and for us to bring the light and shine in order for us to support them and help them,” said Edgar Sierra, associate director at ECS Behavioral Health.