This report (translated into Bahasa Indonesia) has one central purpose: To raise the alarm globally as to the catastrophic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on persons with disabilities worldwide, including children with disabilities, and to catalyse urgent action in the weeks and months to come. Read the English version here.
The report sets out the outcomes of a rapid human rights-based global monitoring initiative – the COVID-19 Disability Rights Monitor (COVID-DRM) – sponsored by a consortium of seven leading disability rights organisations, which took place between 20 April and 8 August this year. Through centring the testimonies of 2,152 respondents from 134 countries, predominantly from persons with disabilities themselves, the report draws the worrying conclusion that states have overwhelmingly failed to take sufficient measures to protect the rights of persons with disabilities in their responses to the pandemic.
The report is organised around four themes which emerged during the process of analysing responses received to an international survey. These themes are:
1. Inadequate measures to protect persons with disabilities in institutions
2. Significant and fatal breakdown of community supports
3. Disproportionate impact on underrepresented groups of persons with disabilities
4. Denial of access to healthcare
While there are many concerns, the report also highlights some promising practices that include persons with disabilities and/or their representative organisations in inclusive COVID-19 responses to the crisis from around the world. The report concludes with recommendations to guide immediate action.
The report includes a section on the impact of COVID-19 on children with disabilities, which states that "forty-three percent (623) of respondents who knew about the situation of children said that their government took no measures to protect the health and safety of children with disabilities in institutions or in the community." Furthermore, "the majority (55%, 867) of the survey respondents said that their government had taken no measures to support families of children with disabilities during the pandemic. In most cases, governments did not take disability-specific measures and did not take child-specific measures."