Scrap the Coronavirus Act provisions

Thu,24 September 2020
News Health & Social Care

Restore the rights of disabled people

The government is being urged to restore the rights of disabled people in advance of the House of Commons debate on the six month review of the Coronavirus Act which will take place on 30 September.

The Coronavirus Act was passed in March, giving powers to central and local government to reduce the rights of disabled people to care, education and mental health protections. No other group of people had their rights removed under the Act.

A group of over 150 organisations including Disability Rights UK, Inclusion London, Liberty and Mind and individuals have signed an open statement asking the government to withdraw the sections of the Act relating to disabled people and to restore our rights.

In addition, a letter signed by 30 peers, including Baroness Jane Campbell and Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, has asked the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock, to restore Care Act rights.

DR UK CEO Kamran Mallick said: “Almost two thirds of the deaths caused by Coronavirus between March and July were those of disabled people. As we move into winter and an increase in the rate of infection, the government needs to do more to support and protect disabled people. Removing our rights is not an acceptable strategy. What is needed is a level of funding sufficient to see local authorities through this winter, which will maintain the full rights of disabled people to the provisions they are entitled to under the Care Act.”

Scrap the Coronavirus Act provisions

We the undersigned call on the Government to restore and protect the rights of disabled people by removing the powers from the Coronavirus Act 2020 which diminish the rights of those who rely on social care and education support. These powers were opposed by disabled people and allies, when they were introduced, have caused confusion and harm when operated and led to reductions in care, support, safeguards and education for disabled adults and children.

The evidence is clear as to the lethal and disproportionate impact this pandemic has had on disabled people. ONS figures show that disabled people have made up two thirds of all Coronavirus deaths and people with health conditions have been the hardest hit. Seven in ten people with a learning disability reported having their social care cut during the pandemic. With the potential of a second wave, it is imperative that the rights of disabled people are protected, not diminished. 

The Coronavirus Act contains provisions allowing local authorities to reduce vital social care duties, weakens support and education for disabled children and young people, and enables the removal of basic legal safeguards that could severely impact the rights of people coming into contact with the mental health system.

At a time when people need care, support, safeguards and education the most, the powers for central and local government to reduce their legal responsibilities to disabled people are wholly unacceptable.

Our lives must be valued equally. Removing our rights causes us disadvantage and discrimination, and puts our mental and physical health and our lives at risk.

As the Coronavirus Act approaches its six-month review, now is the time to recognise the devastating impact the exercise of these powers has had and to restore the legal rights of disabled people.  


Email your MP to ask them to stand up for the restoration of our rights here.

  1. Baroness Jane Campbell of Surbiton
  2. A Patterson
  3. AccessiBlues
  4. Action Disability Kensington and Chelsea
  5. Action on Disability
  6. Action on Hearing Loss
  7. Actors' Children Trust
  8. Age UK
  9. Alison Bancroft
  10. Alliance for Inclusive Education
  11. Amnesty UK
  12. Anand Kumria
  13. Andy Fiolet
  14. Angela Qasir
  15. Ann Langrishe
  16. Anne Sudbury
  17. Asipre Day Services Ltd
  18. Baby People Ltd
  19. Being the Boss
  20. Bernadine McKay
  21. Beverley Townley
  22. Black Belt Advocacy
  23. Black Women's Rape Action Project
  24. Bobbie-Leigh Brandybuck
  25. Bradford & District Disabled People's Forum
  26. Breakthrough
  27. Brian Stocker
  28. Bristol Disabled People Against the Cuts (DPAC)
  29. Bristol Reclaiming Independent Living
  30. British Institute of Human Rights
  31. Bromley Experts by Experience
  32. Business Disability Form
  33. Cait Ni Cadlaig
  34. Camden Disability Action
  35. Carmarthenshire Disability Coalition for Action
  36. Carol Goatham
  37. Carol Lamb
  38. Catherine O'Brien
  39. Chloe Leanneadduocchio
  40. Centre for Mental Health
  41. Changing Perspectives
  42. Charity Retail Association
  43. Chris Gravell
  44. Chris Kilby
  45. Chrissy Hughes
  46. Christina Robinson
  47. Chronic Illness Inclusion Project
  48. Claire Smith
  49. Community Catalysts
  50. D O'Beirne
  51. David Grundy
  52. David Hiley - Parent of disabled young man
  53. David King
  54. Deidre Sellars
  55. Dianna Gunby
  56. Directory of Social Change
  57. Disability Advice Service Lambeth
  58. Disability Law Service
  59. Disability Network Hounslow
  60. Disability North
  61. Disability Peterborough
  62. Disability Positive
  63. Disability Rights UK
  64. Disability Sheffield
  65. Disabild People Against Cuts
  66. Divers Cymru
  67. DPAC Birmingham
  68. DPAC North East and Cumbria
  69. Dragonfly Arts
  70. Eastbourne Access Group
  71. Erica Thomas
  72. Eva Grace
  73. Evenbreak
  74. Fibro Fighters
  75. Fibromyalgia UK
  76. Finding My Range
  77. Frances Thurgood
  78. Freya Papworth
  79. Gillian Matischen
  80. Gillian Spence
  81. Greater Manchester Coalition of Disabled People
  82. Greater Manchester Disabled Peoples Panel
  83. Greenwich DPAC
  84. H&WG LP
  85. HAFAL
  86. Hammersmith and Fulham Coalition Against the Cuts
  87. Harrow Association of Disabled People
  88. Harrow Mencap
  89. Hassan Abdulwahid
  90. Heather Hooper
  91. Helen Fletcher
  92. Helen Jamison
  93. Helen Wrobel
  94. Helen Wrobel - Mother & informal carer of daughter with a disability
  95. Ida Fransson
  96. Include Me TOO
  97. Inclusion Barnet
  98. Inclusion London
  99. Independet Living Alternatives
  100. Into Art
  101. Imperial College UCU (p.c.)
  102. Jacky Stevens
  103. Janes Hughes
  104. Janice Johnson
  105. Jayne Linney
  106. Jayne Phillips
  107. Jean Glaves
  108. Jeanette Dodd
  109. Jennifer Drew
  110. Jennifer Pinkney
  111. Jenny Brazier
  112. Jenny Carter
  113. Joan Wilson
  114. Jordan Gold, Mrs
  115. Judith Barrow
  116. Judy Davies
  117. Julia Smith - Service User - Walsall West Midlands
  118. Kaleidoscope Group
  119. Karen Steward
  120. Katie Mountcastle Trust
  121. Keith Shaw
  122. Kenny Shand
  123. KeyRing Living Support Network
  124. Kisharon
  125. Labour Pary CLP Disability Officer - Sue Horne
  126. Laura Murria
  127. Learning Disability England
  128. Lee Kilminster
  129. Leeds Disabled Peoples Organisation
  130. Leicestershire Centre for Independent Living
  131. Leilah Atkins
  132. Leonard Cheshire
  133. Lesley Rodgers
  134. Liberal Democrats Disability Association
  135. Liberty
  136. Lisa Marie Wilkinson
  137. Lisa Swindell
  138. London Autistic Rights Movement
  139. Lorna McWilliam
  140. Louise Crowley
  141. Lucy Watts MBE
  142. Lyn Brady
  143. Lynn Denham - Worcester City Councillor
  144. Lynda Gold, Mrs - Parent / Carer
  145. Making Connections IOW Ltd
  146. Manchester Disabled People's Access Group
  147. Manchester Disabiled People Against Cuts
  148. Manchester Disability Partnership Board
  149. Margaret Page
  150. Margaret Tomlinson
  151. Maria Hart
  152. Marina
  153. Maureen Closs
  154. McPin
  155. MENCAP
  156. Mental Capacity Forum
  157. Mental Health Alliance
  158. Merton CIL
  159. MIND
  160. Miriam Moreno Perez
  161. Motor Neurone Disease Association
  162. My Life My Choice
  163. Natalie Foster
  164. Natasha Bonner-Williams - Community Services
  165. National Survivor User Network
  166. National Voices
  167. Neil Boyd
  168. Nicki Linney - Private Carer
  169. No More Exclusions
  170. Papworth Trust
  171. Parish Church of St. Mary the Virgin - David Stuttle
  172. Pat Bolland
  173. Pathways Associates (NWTDT) Network of Organisations
  174. Paul Gibbons
  175. Paul Turner
  176. Paul Whittingham
  177. People First Self Advocacy
  178. Peter H. Orr
  179. Peter Thurgood
  180. POhWER
  181. Positive Signs
  182. Protect
  183. Reclaiming our Futures Alliance
  184. Rethink Mental Illness
  185. Richard Lloyd-Jones
  186. Richard Taunton Sixth Form College
  187. Richmond Aid
  188. Ricovery In The Bin
  189. RNIB
  190. Rose Grayston
  191. Royal College of Occupational Therapists
  192. RTSFC - Hilra Gondim Vinha
  193. RUILs
  194. Sarah Gorman
  195. Sarah Tranter
  196. SCOPE
  197. SENSE
  198. Shaping our Lives
  199. Sheila Brazier
  200. Sign Health
  201. Spectrum Centre for Independent Living CIC
  202. Spirit UK
  203. Steve Waller
  204. Sunderland People First
  205. Surrey Coalition of Disabled People
  206. Tereza Shortfall
  207. The Challenging Behaviour Foundation
  208. Thomas More Project
  209. Tony Urquhard
  210. Tracey Davidson
  211. Transport for All
  212. Tricia Williams
  213. Unite Community Birmingham
  214. University of Edinburgh
  215. Vick Forfar
  216. Visual Impaired in Camden
  217. VoiceAbility
  218. Voluntary Organisations Disability Group
  219. Wesley Frost
  220. Wheels for Wellbeing
  221. Willem
  222. William Hendrie
  223. Wiltshire Centre for Independent Living
  224. WinVisible
  225. Wish
  226. Womachack - Lisa and Bill Markham
  227. Women’s Resource Centre
  228. Your Support Matter CIC
  229. Z2K



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