Persons with disabilities

List Map
Catalyzing Rights and Persons with disabilities

Relevant sources: ICCPR Arts. 2(1), 26; ICESCR Art. 2(2); CRC Arts. 2(1), 23; CRPD; ICRMW Arts. 1(1), 7; UDHR Arts. 2, 7, 25(1)

Core elements of the guarantee during the COVID-19 pandemic include:

  • Ensure the right to health of persons with disabilities including by measures that “[p]rohibit the denial of treatment on the basis of disability,” “[e]nsure priority testing of persons with disabilities presenting symptoms,” “[i]dentify and remove barriers to treatment including ensuring accessible environments [and] the availability and dissemination of health information and communications in accessible modes, means and formats” (OHCHR)
  • Ensure the rights of persons with disabilities living in institutions including by measures that “[d]ischarge and release” them and “ensure provision of support in the community,” “prioritise testing and promote preventive measures within institutions,” and “ensure continued respect . . . including freedom from exploitation, violence and abuse, non-discrimination, the right to free and informed consent, and access to justice” (OHCHR)
  • Ensure the rights of persons with disabilities to live in communities including by measures that “[e]nsure that information on COVID-19 related measures is accessible,” exempt “support persons of persons with disabilities . . . from stay-at-home restrictions in order to provide support,” and “[e]nsure the provision of reasonable accommodation to persons with disabilities by refraining from blanket prohibitions” (OHCHR)
  • Protect the work, income, and livelihoods of persons with disabilities, including by ensuring financial aid for those who do not have income and “[i]ncrease[d] existing disability benefits” (OHCHR)
  • Protect the right to education of persons with disabilities including by measures that “[p]rovide clear guidance to education and school authorities on the scope of their obligations and the variety of available resources when providing education outside schools,” “[e]nsure access to Internet for remote learning and ensure that software is accessible to persons with disabilities,” and “[p]rovide guidance, training and support for teachers on inclusive education through remote learning” (OHCHR)
  • Protect persons with disabilities from violence including by measures that “[e]nsure that reporting mechanisms, hotlines, emergency shelters and other forms of assistance are accessible to and include persons with disabilities” and “[r]aise awareness and provide training about the risk of violence faced by persons with disabilities, in particular women and girls with disabilities” (OHCHR)
  • Ensure rights protections for “specific population groups in which persons with disabilities are overrepresented” including prisoners with disabilities as well as those who do not have adequate housing (OHCHR)
  • Put into place “reasonable accommodation measures . . . to enable people with disabilities to reduce contacts and the risk of contamination” (UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities)
  • Implement measures “to appropriately respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring inclusion and the effective participation of persons with disabilities” and “take all appropriate measures to ensure access for persons with disabilities to health services and provide persons with disabilities with the same range, quality and standard of health care as provided to other persons, including mental health services” (UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Special Envoy of the UNSG on Disability and Accessibility)
  • Put into place both “mainstream and disability-specific measures . . . to ensure systematic inclusion of persons with disabilities” in COVID-19 “response and recovery” (UN)
  • Ensure that “information, facilities, services and programmes in the COVID-19 response and recovery” are accessible so that persons with disabilities are included “in the immediate health and socio-economic response to COVID-19” (UN)
  • Guarantee “meaningful consultation with and active participation of persons with disabilities and their representative organizations” in “all stages of the COVID-19 response and recovery” efforts (UN)
  • Put into place “accountability mechanisms to ensure disability inclusion in the COVID-19 response” (UN)
  • Ensure that responses to COVID “reflect and respond to the multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination faced by persons with disabilities to ensure that the most marginalised groups among them are not left behind” (UN)

Further guidance can be found here: OHCHR: Disability considerations during the COVID-19 outbreak, Disability inclusive social protection response to COVID-19 crisis; Special Envoy of the UNSG on disability and accessibility and Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons: The right to life of persons with disabilities and older persons infected by Covid-19, Women and girls with disabilities and older women in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic; UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities; UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities; UNICEF; WHO; COE; IACHR; OAS

Show me of advances during COVID-19

Showing 15 matching measures.

Persons with disabilities

Measure Country
National Policy on Radical Inclusion in Schools Sierra Leone

The National Policy on Radical Inclusion in Schools, under the Ministry of Basic and Senior Secondary Education “provide[s] a roadmap for the day-to-day operations of schools and the Ministry of…

New Zealand, Labour Market Statistics (Disability): December 2020 Quarter New Zealand

This data “provides comparisons between labour market measures for disabled and non-disabled people in New Zealand” and “includes labour market participation and employment rates as well as differences in wages…

Ensuring Access to Sexual and Reproductive Health Services during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Tajikistan Tajikistan

The Ministry of Health and Social Protection of the Population of the Republic of Tajikistan, in cooperation with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Gender and Development, and the National…

Making Disability Rights Real in a Pandemic, Te Whakatinana i ngā Tika Hauātanga i te wā o te Urutā New Zealand

Several institutions including the Independent Monitoring Mechanism, the Ombudsman, and the Human Rights Commission published a report which “reflects disabled New Zealanders’ experiences of the COVID-19 emergency and details areas…

Supreme Decree No. 4392 Bolivia

According to this decree, beneficiaries of the “Bonus against Hunger” will include, among others, certain person with visual disabilities who were already receiving a separate bonus and persons with serious…

Samagra Shiksha – Meeting of the Project Approval Board India

In a meeting “to consider the Annual Work Plan & Budget (AWP&B) 2020-21 of Samagra Shiksha for the State of Kerala” one element of the “COVlD- 19 Response: Ensuring safety…

United Kingdom – Scotland Police Scotland – Message to Communities United Kingdom

Police Scotland states that it is “aware some disabled people have reported being unfairly challenged and, on occasion, abused about issues linked to social distancing and face coverings,” commits to…

Birmingham City Council Develop Communication Campaign to Support Disadvantaged Communities United Kingdom

The Birmingham City Council’s Public Health Division “developed a communication and engagement campaign to further support BAME [Black, Asian, and minority ethnic], disabled and LGBT communities across the city during…

Amenities for People with Disabilities during the Pandemic Poland

As part of the “Anti-Crisis Shield Act,” support was provided “for caregivers of adults with disabilities, in the case of the shutdown of rehabilitation and educational centre, support centres or…

Care For Adults and People with Disabilities Will Be Expanded Under OPHRD Bulgaria

The Ministry of Labor and Social Policy announced the allocation of “BGN [Bulgarian Lev] 45 million” to support people with disabilities, enabling municipalities to “apply for funding for home care.”…

Legislative Decree No. 1468: Legislative Decree that Establishes Prevention and Protection Provisions for Persons with Disabilities Facing the Health Emergency Caused by COVID-19 (Decreto Legislativo No. 1468: Decreto Legislativo que Establece Disposiciones de Prevención y Protección para las Personas con Discapacidad ante la Emergencia Sanitaria Ocasionada por el COVID-19) Peru

This legislative decree aims to establish prevention and protection measures for persons with disabilities in the face of COVID-19 including by incorporating the perspective of persons with disabilities in all…

Caring for People of Determination Amid COVID-19 United Arab Emirates

The government has put into place several initiatives to support “people of determination” (Note: “The UAE refers to the people with disabilities as ‘people of determination’ in recognition of their…

Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the Americans with Disabilities Act United States

This guidance which “provides information” about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Rehabilitation Act, and “pandemic planning in the workplace” was “re-issued on March 19, 2020, to incorporate updates…

Questions and Answers on Providing Services to Children with Disabilities During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Outbreak United States

This document addresses “states’ responsibilities to infants, toddlers, and children with disabilities and their families, and to the staff serving these children.” Questions and answers address: obligations of local educational…

Translation of COVID-19 Related Information into Sign Language for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Community including “Public Notice from the Office of the Prime Minister on Coronavirus Disease 2019” Rwanda

UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Rwanda has “partnered with the Rwandan National Union of the Deaf (RNUD) and National Council for People with Disabilities (NCPD) to translate all COVID-19 information…

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