Covid-19 and the rights of disabled people

Open Statement
from Disabled People’s 
Organisations and Allies
– February 2021

Coronavirus has hit disabled people hard. 60% of deaths from
coronavirus have been those of Disabled People.

Disabled People have struggled to access healthcare, social
care and food and many have been left without the £20 weekly uplift given to
those on Universal Credit.

We ask Government and the NHS to recognise the enormous
impact of coronavirus on the lives of Disabled People.  

We urge Government and NHS to respond more urgently to
protect disabled people from coronavirus.

We ask that the needs of Disabled People are met in more
personalised and accessible ways.

In particular, we urge that action be taken to ensure that:

The letter to 1.7 million new shielders and 2.2
million existing shielders is sent in plain English and accessible formats and
that sources of information and support are provided both digitally and

Everyone who has a learning disability, autistic people or people who have a cognitive impairment is included in priority group 6, to
ensure early vaccination.

Disabled People of working age living in
residential accommodation or hospitals are included in priority group 6, to
ensure early vaccination.

Disabled People know that they can contact their
doctor for advice on whether they should be included in priority vaccination group

Everyone with a learning disability, autistic people or people with a cognitive impairment has their health records checked, to ensure
that any wrongful Do Not Attempt Resuscitation Notices are removed.

Signed by:

Ability Consultancy (NW)

Breakthrough UK

British Association for Supported Employment

Business Disability Forum

DIAL West Cheshire

Disability Equality (NW)

Disability North

Disability Positive

Disability Rights UK

Dyspraxia Foundation

Learning Disability England

Living Options Devon


MS Society



SPECTRUM Centre for Independent Living

Together Trust

TSSA – Disability Working Group


Wheels for Wellbeing

Wiltshire Centre for Independent Living

WSH BME Network