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Guidance for including people with disabilities in responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. Guidance for development partners

PREGEL, Andrea
LE FANU, Guy
May 2020

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Practical guidance is provided for development partners to develop disability inclusive responses to the COVID-19 pandemic during the emergency phase of the COVID19 pandemic. In the immediate- and long-term response to the pandemic, it is vital that all development partners take steps to strengthen health systems that are disability-inclusive.

 

Topics include: intersectionality; assessing gaps and needs; engaging people with disabilities and DPO's; accessible and inclusive communications; healthcare and essential services; livelihoods and social protection; education; independent living and housing; and evidence generation.

The impacts of COVID-19 on people with disabilities: a rapid review. Disability Inclusion Helpdesk Query No: 35

MEANIE-DAVIS, Jessie
LEE, Harri
CORBY, Nick
April 2020

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There is currently very limited data and evidence on the impacts of COVID-19 on people with disabilities and pre-existing health conditions, with no disability-disaggregated data on mortality rates available in the public sphere. However, reports from the media, disability advocates and disabled peoples’ organisations (DPOs) point to several emerging impacts, including primary and secondary impacts including on health, education, food security and livelihoods.  Most of the available data is from high income countries (HICs) though reports from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) are likely to emerge. Evidence was gathered by a rapid desk based review. Gaps are identified. 

 

The section concerned with lessons drawn from similar epidemics draws heavily on lessons learned from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa in 2014-2016, and touches on lessons from the Zika outbreak in 2015-2016 and the SARS pandemic in the early 2000s.10 It also touches briefly on SARS, MERS and H1N1 (swine flu). 

 

Primary and secondary impacts of COVID-19 on people with disabilities are reviewed.


People with disabilities are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 not only because it can exacerbate underlying medical conditions, but because of attitudinal, environmental and institutional barriers to their participation in and benefit from the pandemic response. For example, inaccessible public health messaging and healthcare facilities, and stigma and discrimination.

LEARNING MUST GO ON: Recommendations for keeping children safe and learning, during and after the COVID-19 crisis

April 2020

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This brief highlights some of the potential impacts of school closures (associated with the impact on the COVID-19 on children) with a focus on the most marginalised, including those already living in crisis and conflict contexts. It provides recommendations for governments and donors, together with partners, to ensure that safe, quality and inclusive learning reaches all children and that education systems are strengthened ready for the return to school

IDDC Inclusive Education Task Group response to COVID-19

April 2020

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Many countries in the world are adjusting to the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. It is clear that in addition to the impact on health, this outbreak will have a long-term significant impact on the education of children and young people globally. Already, nearly 90% of children and young people are experiencing disruption to their education and 185 countries have implemented country-wide school closures. Children with disabilities were amongst the most likely to be excluded from education, with 50% of children with disabilities in low- and middle-income countries out of school before the pandemic. Additional, specific challenges in times of school closures are reported and a call is made to governments.

Guidance note 1: Inclusive digital learning

McGEOWN, Julia
BOISSEAU, Sandra
BOHAN-JACQUOT, Sandrine
April 2020

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This guidance is part of a series to provide support during the Covid-19 crisis. The guidance notes include: #1- Inclusive Digital learning; #2 - Teacher resources; and #3 Home support

 

To help with the vast range of information on distance learning, here are some recommendations about helpful resources that are simple to use to complement learning, do not require subscriptions, include resources in a range of languages (used in the context of HI programs), and are free to the user.

 

Ten top tips are given on inclusive digital learning with a focus on children with disabilities with resources to follow

Guidance note 2: Teacher resources

McGEOWN, Julia
BOISSEAU, Sandra
BOHAN-JACQUOT, Sandrine
April 2020

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This guidance is part of a series to provide support during the Covid-19 crisis. The guidance notes include: #1- Inclusive Digital learning; #2 - Teacher resources; and #3 Home support.

 

To help teachers support their students during school closure, and to improve both wellbeing and learning outcomes for girls and boys affected by the COVID 19 crisis, a wide range of resources have been developed.

 

10 tips for teaching children with disabilities during COVID-19 are given with links to various resources.

Guidance note 3: Home support

McGEOWN, Julia
BOISSEAU, Sandra
BOHAN-JACQUOT, Sandrine
April 2020

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This guidance is part of a series to provide support during the Covid-19 crisis. The guidance notes include: #1- Inclusive Digital learning; #2 - Teacher resources; and #3 Home support

 

To help parents interact constructively with their children during this time of self-isolation, and to improve both wellbeing and learning outcomes for girls and boys affected by the COVID 19 crisis, a wide range of resources have been developed.

 

10 top tips are provided for Home Support for parents of children with disabilities with links to various resources.

 

 

COVID-19 and the rights of persons with disabilities: Guidance

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
April 2020

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This guidance aims to:

  • bring awareness of the pandemic’s impact on persons with disabilities and their rights;
  • draw attention to some promising practices already being undertaken around the world;
  • identify key actions for States and other stakeholders;
  • provide resources for further learning about ensuring rights based COVID-19 responses inclusive of persons with disabilities.

Topics are:

1. What is the impact of COVID-19 on the right to health of persons with disabilities

2. What is the impact of COVID-19 on persons with disabilities who are living in institutions

3. What is the impact of COVID-19 on the rights of persons with disabilities to live in the community

4. What is the impact of COVID-19 on work income and livelihood of persons with disabilities

5. What is the impact of COVID-19 on the right to education of persons with disabilities

6. What is the impact of COVID-19 on the right of persons with disabilities to protections from violence

7. What is the impact of COVID-19 on specific population groups in which persons with disabilities are overrepresented

Ensuring inclusive education during COVID-19

RICHLER, Diane
TESNI, Sian
McGEOWN, Julia
et al
April 2020

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 Practical recommendations and examples for supporting inclusive education approaches in the COVID-19 response, with a particular focus on supporting children and young people with disabilities are presented

Estimated prevalence of disability and developmental delay among pre‐school children in rural Malawi: Findings from ‘Tikule Limodzi’, a cross‐sectional survey

MURPHY, Rachel
et al
January 2020

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This study measured and compared the prevalence of disability and developmental delay among children attending preschool centres in rural Malawi. A cross-sectional survey was conducted in 48 preschool centres in Thyolodistrict, Malawi. Data were collected from parents or guardians of 20 children per centre. Disability was ascertained using the Washington Group/UNICEF Child Functioning Module. Child development was measured using the language and social domains of the Malawi Development Assessment Tool. A total of 960 children were enrolled; 935 (97.4%) children were assessed for disability and 933 (97.2%) for developmental delay; 100 (10.7%) children were identified as having a disability

 

Child Care Health Dev. 2020;46:187–194.
https://doi.org/10.1111/cch.12741

Disability inclusion annual report 2019

UNITED NATIONS RELIEF AND WORKS AGENCY FOR PALESTINE REFUGEES IN THE NEAR EAST
December 2019

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United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) adopts a twin-track approach to ensure the full inclusion of Palestine refugees with disabilities. This entails ‘disability mainstreaming’, whereby all UNRWA programmes and services are universally designed to ensure that they are usable by and/or reach beneficiaries with disabilities, coupled with the provision of ‘targeted/tailored interventions’. During 2019, UNRWA implemented the following activities to address the specific needs of Palestine refugees with disabilities:

  • Direct Specialized Services for Persons with Disabilities
  • Disability Inclusion through Programmes
  • International Cooperation

Yemen: War and exclusion leave millions of people with disabilities in the lurch

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL
December 2019

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Entering its fifth year, the conflict in Yemen, which has been marked by serious violations and crimes under international law, has had a disproportionate impact on persons with disabilities. Based on 96 interviews, this report documents how the war has affected the ability of 53 persons with disabilities,  31 of whom were displaced, to access and equally enjoy their human rights.  This report documents how persons with disabilities have endured unequal access to quality health services, education and employment opportunities as well as the challenges they face fleeing violence and living in displacement

IASC Guidelines, Inclusion of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action

INTER-AGENCY STANDING COMMITTEE (IASC)
November 2019

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The guidelines set out essential actions that humanitarian actors must take in order to effectively identify and respond to the needs and rights of persons with disabilities who are most at risk of being left behind in humanitarian settings.

The recommended actions in each chapter place persons with disabilities at the centre of humanitarian action, both as actors and as members of affected populations. They are specific to persons with disabilities and to the context of humanitarian action and build on existing and more general standards and guidelines.

These are the first humanitarian guidelines to be developed with and by persons with disabilities and their representative organizations in association with traditional humanitarian stakeholders. Based on the outcomes of a comprehensive global and regional multi-stakeholder consultation process, they are designed to promote the implementation of quality humanitarian programmes in all contexts and across all regions, and to establish and increase both the inclusion of persons with disabilities and their meaningful participation in all decisions that concern them.

Social protection and disability in Zambia

KIDD, Stephen
WAPLING, Lorraine
KABARE, Krystle
October 2019

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This report presents findings from a short study in Zambia to examine its social protection system and programmes and identifies the challenges faced by persons with disabilities in accessing them. The study was undertaken by a visit to Zambia between 31st October – 4th November 2016 during which a range of interviews and focus group discussions were undertaken. The study was supported by a review of the literature and some limited analysis of administrative data.

Topics presented in the report include:

  • the broader context of Zambia particularly around issues of education, health and consumption dynamics
  • the national population of persons with disabilities
  • key challenges faced by persons with disabilities
  • the legislative and policy framework on disability in Zambia
  • the governance of social protection and support for persons with disabilities
  • the disability classification system and an overview of the social protection system
  • the evolution of the Social Cash Transfer and access to the scheme by persons with disabilities 

Children with hearing impairment in Malawi, a cohort study

MULWAFU, Wakisa
et al
October 2019

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The aim of this research was to assess the outcome of children with ear and hearing disorders 3 years after initial diagnosis, in terms of referral uptake, treatment received and satisfaction with this treatment. It also aimed to assess the social participation of the affected children, specifically, their ability to make friends and communicate needs, and their enrolment at school

752 children had been diagnosed in 2013 as having a hearing impairment and 307 (40.8%) children were traced for follow-up in 2016. 

 

Bulletin of the World Health Organization, Volume 97, Number 10, October 2019, 645-728

http://dx.doi.org/10.2471/BLT.18.226241

Bridging the mobile disability gap in refugee settings

DOWNER, Matthew
September 2019

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This case study highlights refugees with disabilities’ access to mobile services and the benefits and challenges associated with using these services in three different humanitarian contexts. The analysis is based on a representative survey of refugees in three contexts: Bidi Bidi refugee settlement (Uganda), Kiziba refugee camp (Rwanda) and with urban refugees in Jordan. It also includes qualitative data drawn from two focus groups conducted with refugees with disabilities in Bidi Bidi and Kiziba. The survey used the Washington Group Questions (WGQs) to assess prevalence of disability amongst the refugee population

Summary Report. LEAVE NO CHILD BEHIND Invest in the early years

WALKER, Jo
BABOO, Nafisa
September 2019

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A summary overview of the findings of a study led by LIGHT FOR THE WORLD with its partners, supported by the Early Childhood Program of the Open Society Foundations. The aim of the study was to uncover the trends in aid for inclusive Early Child Development (ECD) for 2017. It further identified strategic commitments to ECD, as reflected in policy documents up until 2019. The research examined donors’ spending and commitments in three key areas: early childhood development; inclusive early education and pre-primary; and disability-inclusive early childhood development investments in the sectors of health, nutrition, education and sanitation.

 

This study presents a baseline on donor investment in ECD services in low- and middle-income countries for the children who are traditionally left behind. It draws lessons from six bilateral donor countries – Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US) – as well as the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), European Union (EU) Institutions, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Bank. Donor advocacy briefs for each of these donors are provided.

 

The study focuses on donor contributions to scaling up ECD services in four African countries: Burkina Faso, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe

Good practices on the implementation of the UNCRPD in Timor Leste (2015-2017)

HANDICAP INTERNATIONAL
DOS SANTOS, Domingos T.M.
et al
August 2019

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The 2015-2017 Advocating for Change Project (AfC), a project funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), aimed at promoting and advocating for rights of people with disabilities through the push for the ratification of the UNCRPD at the national level, improving quality decentralization process at the local level and promoting quality livelihood action for people with disabilities through improved and inclusive vocational training center (CNEFP) in Tibar.

One particular activity in this project is the collection and dissemination of best practices with the "Making it Work" methodology. This methodology aims to document and promote already existing best practices that adhere to the principles of UNCRPD. Making it Work utilizes a multi stakeholder approach and encourages members of DPOs and other organizations to identify best practices and effective action in and surrounding their localities. These best practices are then collected with the ultimate goal to serve as examples of embodiment of the UNCRPD for replication by organizations or institutions elsewhere.

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