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Disability Positive signs open statement to government and NHS

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Disability Positive has signed an open statement today (19 February 2021) calling on the government and NHS to recognise the impact of Coronavirus on the lives of disabled people.

Along with many other disabled people’s organisations and allies, we want to see urgent action to protect disabled people’s rights and needs.

The statement will be sent to government and the NHS.

You can read the statement below or download a PDF version at the bottom of this page.

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 non-digitally.
  • Everyone who has a learning disability or who is autistic or has 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 6.
  • Everyone with a learning disability or who is autistic or has 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

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