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'Abandoned, forgotten and ignored' – report shows Coronavirus' impact on disabled people

25 June 2020

Inclusion London has launched its interim report based on hundreds of responses to its Social Care survey. 

The report paints a stark picture according to the pan-London DPO:

“From the outset, disabled people have been discriminated against, forgotten, and in some cases abandoned as policymakers have ignored our needs. Or, at best considered us as an afterthought. 

“During the pandemic disabled people saw our legal rights diminished, we experienced resource rationing and blanket policies.  This led to many of us struggling to get bare necessities, losing support and independence and living in fear for our lives.

“The pandemic has shone a light on the long-standing structural inequalities and discrimination that deaf and disabled people experience. The dreadful disparities are reflected in the grim data released by the Office for National Statistics, which says disabled people were about twice as likely to die from Covid-19.

“Despite the shocking statistics, the plight of disabled people was largely missing from public discourse. We are publishing this report to give voice to people who shared their experience with us.”

Among the key themes in the report include:

  • Over 60% of disabled people questioned said they had struggled to access food, medicine and necessities
  • Over 35% of respondents talked about increasing levels of psychological distress
  • Nearly half of the respondents talked about inaccessible information, confusing guidance and lack of advice
  • Disabled people feel abandoned and neglected
  • The right to life and rationing of resources
  • Social care is being cut, reduced or failing to provide protective equipment
  • The coronavirus pandemic has thrown into stark relief the extent of the discrimination and exclusion disabled people face

Fazilet Hadi DRUK’s Head of Policy said:

“This is a depressing account of the struggles and discrimination disabled people have faced during the coronavirus crisis and shows how far away we are from equality.

We need government and wider society,  to ensure that recovery planning is fully inclusive of disabled people.”

The Inclusion London report Abandoned, forgotten and ignored – the impact of Covid-19 on Disabled people is available from inclusionlondon.org.uk

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