Resources search

The impact of Covid-19 on people with disabilities – emerging findings

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
THOMPSON, Stephen
WICKENDEN, Mary
WAKOKO, Eric
AKTER, Fatema
NJUNGI, Josephine
CHUBA-UZO, Shadrach
September 2020

Expand view

Emerging evidence suggests that people with disabilities are amongst the groups most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in all aspects of their lives. In order to provide more systematic evidence, narrative interviews were conducted with a diverse group of 40 jobseekers with disabilities in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda who are involved with the Inclusion Works programme. The first round of interviews were conducted in July and August 2020. Initial key findings are given.

 

Looking under the veil: Challenges faced by people with disabilities in cross-border entrepreneurship

MATSAURE, Keresencia
CHINDIMBA, Agness
ZIMANO, Felistas R
RUFFIN, Fayth
September 2020

Expand view

Background: Cross-border entrepreneurship is one source of livelihood that is transforming people’s lives, especially those with limited resources and educational qualifications and those in need of supplementary earnings to complement meagre formal earnings. However, despite strides made to make this avenue worthwhile, this Zimbabwean study shows that hidden hindrances still persist from procedural and structural barriers from road entry point management systems. To people with disabilities (PWDs), the impact of these hidden barriers is severe to the extent of obstructing their optimum progression into cross-border entrepreneurship.

 

Objectives: This article sought to interrogate some veiled challenges in border management systems affecting PWDs’ quest to venture into cross-border entrepreneurship. This angle has, to this end, been timidly addressed as most organisations and legislation have concentrated on making things work for the majority of the populace.

 

Method: Qualitative phenomenological method in which researchers’ lived experiences, review of literature, ideas and opinions is complemented by secondary survey data from a road entry point management system study in the Zimbabwean setting.

 

Results: Cross-border entrepreneurship has potential to transform people’s lives: 1) road and border management systems’ procedural and structural complications present hidden challenges impeding PWDs’ entry and optimum participation in cross border entrepreneurship, 2) people with disabilities are not automatically dependents; in fact, most have dependents looking up to the, 30 social construction of disability persists and must be curbed and 4) there is a need to institute a ‘stakeholders triad approach’.

 

Conclusion: The existing road entry points’ management systems are not informed by considerations from PWDs, hence the existence of hidden challenges. Cross-border entrepreneurship can open significant livelihood avenues to PWDs. A stakeholders ‘triad-approach’, proposed herein, can solve some of the policy discrepancies as it recommends utilising inputs from PWDs, research and policy-makers.

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020 

Covid-19 Double Jeopardy for Persons with Disability

ADD International
August 2020

Expand view

SUMMARY

This report presents the findings from telephone interviews with 91 representatives from 15 Disabled People’s Organisation (DPO) partners in Bangladesh, to ask about the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on persons with disabilities in Bangladesh.

The report finds that, in the Covid-19 pandemic, some persons with disabilities experience double jeopardy—not only are persons with disabilities disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, but they are also disproportionately excluded from protection and survival support.

Persons with disabilities report being disproportionately excluded from Covid-19 support. 63% of respondents report not receiving the same protection and survival support as others. Two-thirds of those who described their personal experiences reported supply shortage or diversion of essential food and medical supplies as reasons for why they had been excluded.

Relief that has been provided has not met need. Many respondents (84%) report that survival support does not meet their basic needs. Support received has mostly been food instead of cash. Some (17%) report difficulty in following Covid-19 advice, mostly because they cannot afford protection materials.

Persons with multiple disabilities are being left further behind. Respondents with multiple functional difficulties experience more exclusion than respondents with one functional difficulty. This finding of disproportionate exclusion is statistically significant and consistent with qualitative responses, which show that most of those that did report challenges in following received advice were persons with multiple functional difficulties. This strongly suggests that persons with multiple functional difficulties experience more barriers. Persons with multiple functional difficulties who were excluded tended to report difficulties in communicating, remembering, self-care and walking.

The economic impact of the pandemic is acute for persons with disabilities. On average, respondents report losing 65% of their income since the Covid-19 crisis began, which in absolute terms, after adjusting for purchase power parity, is the equivalent of moving from £167 to £58 in monthly earnings.

Some respondents report that they are skipping meals and going hungry. Anecdotal reports reveal that families are reverting to one main meal every two days, or two main meals every three days. Many are borrowing and relying on family support to meet their daily needs to survive, and some of those who already depended on family support have had that support reduced or withdrawn. On balance, future plans reflect a sense of precarity due to uncertainty, ranging from feelings of hope with specific plans to powerlessness with no plans.

Government can do more. Many respondents said government should prioritise persons with disabilities and provide more relief. Many voiced concerns about how relief was being distributed or stolen, and that it is not reaching those most in need. The majority of respondents said that NGOs and wealthy people should play a role in support efforts.

International Principles and Guidelines on access to justice for persons with disabilities

SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR ON THE RIGHTS OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES
COMMITTEE ON THE RIGHTS OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES
SPECIAL ENVOY OF THE SECRETARY GENERAL ON DISABILITY AND ACCESSIBILITY
August 2020

Expand view

The International Principles and Guidelines on access to Justice for persons with disabilities are a practical tool to support States in designing and implementing justice systems that provide equal access to justice for persons with disabilities, in line with international human rights standards. They are a result of consultations and collaboration with disability rights experts, organizations of people with disabilities, States, academics, and other practitioners.

 

The document outlines 10 principles of access to justice for people with disabilities

How can we measure disability in research related to the COVID-19 response?

MACTAGGART, Islay
KUPER, Hannah
August 2020

Expand view

There is growing evidence that COVID-19 is disproportionally impacting the lives of people with disabilities. This includes evidence of the increased risk of severe outcomes of contracting COVID-19 amongst people with existing health conditions, including many people with disabilities. It also includes a wide range of other potential impacts such as: reductions or disruptions in non-COVID-19 health or rehabilitation services, the effects of shielding on isolation and mental health, the implications of social distancing on people who require carer support, and the impact on poverty, participation and wellbeing due to disrupted disability-inclusive development programmes.

 

Measurement of disability in research has historically been contested and a number of different tools exist. Clear guidance is needed on how to determine which tool to use to understand the situation of people with disabilities in different settings, and plan responsive and inclusive COVID-19 programmes and policies to support their needs. Good quality, comparable data on disability is essential for tracking the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as prevention and mitigation interventions, amongst people with disabilities. Such evidence is also imperative for tracking progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals, and UNCRPD compliance.

 

This evidence brief synthesises findings from a scoping review of ICF-compatible tools to measure disability in population-based surveys with a focus on LMICs (2018), protocols and research outputs from seven population-based surveys of disability across Asia, Africa and the Pacific, secondary analyses of the South African Census, US National Health Interview Survey and three Demographic and Health Surveys, reflections from global stakeholders in disability measurement (including the UN Flagship Report on Disability), and evidence compiled for the upcoming Global Disability Research Massive Open Online Course at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

COVID-19, Amplifying Voices: Our Lives, Our Say: Learning from COVID-19 through the experiences of blind and partially sighted persons across the world

ZAYED, Yana
et al
August 2020

Expand view

The World Blind Union (WBU) conducted a study to examine the extent to which COVID-19 pandemic has exposed some deep structural inequalities in society. Data gathered from the study is evidencing that persons with disabilities, older persons, and persons from lower socioeconomic status backgrounds are among those hardest hit by the pandemic. While this report puts a spotlight on the voices of blind and partially sighted persons, many of the experiences shared strongly resonate with numerous other studies that are also highlighting how marginalised groups have been affected by this crisis. Through this report, WBU hopes to raise awareness on the specifics of what those challenges have meant in reality for its constituents, as well as shed light on what have been effective resilience strategies for them. The study was made possible with the support of CBM Global

To understand the situation of our constituents, the World Blind Union (WBU) conducted a global survey in collaboration with key stakeholders. In April 2020, the WBU launched an open online survey for seven weeks in Spanish, French and English, seeking information from blind and partially sighted persons on how COVID-19 was impacting their day to day life. 853 people participated in the survey. The respondents expressed in their own words how their lives had been and continue to be impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. This report is a compilation of those voices. It depicts the ways in which COVID-19 response measures taken by state and non-state actors have created additional barriers and challenges for blind and partially sighted people. It also includes powerful testimonies on how people have shown resilience in the face of adversity.

 

 

Barriers experienced by people with disabilities participating in income-generating activities. A case of a sheltered workshop in Bloemfontein, South Africa

TINTA, Nokuthula
STEYN, Hester
VERMAAS, Jana
2020

Expand view

Background: People with disabilities often participate in income-generating activities (IGAs) in sheltered workshop in South Africa. However, they face many barriers that limit their ability to participate effectively in economic activities hosted by the workshops.

 

Objectives: To illustrate the barriers that limit the participation of people with disabilities in IGAs in a sheltered workshop.

 

Method: A qualitative exploratory single case study was conducted in a sheltered workshop. Eighteen participants, age 22 to 52 years with various disabilities were purposively sampled. Observations and semi-structured interview guides were used to generate data. Verbatim transcription was used after which content analysis was applied to identify ideas and concepts relating to barriers experienced by people with disabilities participating in IGAs.

 

Results: Some of the barriers participants experienced included institutional barriers (ability to use working tools, inability to concentrate for long periods, lack of funds, language barriers, lack of motivation, activities that are not stimulating and lack of artistry skills) and attitudinal barriers (exclusion from decision making) These barriers had an adverse influence on their performance in IGAs.

 

Conclusion: The study found eight different barriers that existed in a sheltered workshop which limited the participation of the people with disabilities that attended the workshop. This information can be used to develop strategies to address each barrier and promote increased participation of the individual thereby improving their quality of life.

 

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020 

“Aid out of reach”: untold stories from people with disabilities

Light for the world
July 2020

Expand view

Humanitarian organisations can learn a lot from what happened during the Cyclone Idai aid response. The cyclone and its impact made global headlines. The NGO community reacted fast. More than 400 organisations and 1,000 aid workers were rapidly deployed to the affected areas of Mozambique. But what happened next remains untold.

Their stories, which form the basis of our recommendations, can help key actors improve their responses to other crises, including COVID-19.

Labour Force Survey (LFS) resources. The global reference for labour force survey design

INTERNATIONAL LABOUR ORGANISATION (ILO)
July 2020

Expand view

National labour force surveys (LFS) are the main source behind essential headline indicators of the labour market and the world of work. A wide range of economic and social policies, from monetary and fiscal policies to employment, decent work, vocational education and training, and a wide range of poverty reduction and social inclusion policies depend on labour force surveys as their main source of statistics for informed decision-making and monitoring.

To support countries in developing their national LFS, the ILO Department of Statistics maintains a set of model LFS resources to support PAPI and CAPI data collection. The ILO model LFS resources consolidate existing good survey practice and new approaches following evidence from ILO’s LFS testing programme to support the collection of work and labour market data, aligned with the latest international standards.

 

An add-on module has been introduced (July 2020) "Functional difficulties and barriers to employment" concerned with different barriers to labour market integration of persons with disabiliities.

Representation and methods of normalisation: Narratives of disability within a South African tertiary institution

DEVAR, Teagan
BOBAT, Shaida
REUBEN, Shanya
July 2020

Expand view

Background: The manner in which disability is understood influences how individuals within a society, its institutions, policies and structures are able to accommodate and support people with disabilities (PWD) (Kaplan 2000). Understanding how students with disabilities (SWD) within a higher education context perceive and experience disability as well as how key players, namely, lecturers and disability unit (DU) staff, who influence that experience, is important in further shaping policy and providing a truly inclusive environment for all within HEIs.

 

Objectives: The study aimed to examine the narratives of disability among SWD, lecturers and the DU within a tertiary institution, with a view to better understand their experiences and required initiatives to address the challenges of disability within a higher tertiary institution.

 

Method: The study drew on three theoretical frameworks: social constructionism, feminist disability theory and the Foucauldian perspective. Data for the study were collected through in-depth semi-structured interviews with 12 SWD, seven members of staff from the institution’s DU and five lecturers from within the School of Applied Human Sciences. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.

 

Results: The findings suggested that in spite of both facilitating and positive representations of disability, the dominant representation of disability was perceived as challenging and as a result, disempowering. Students with disabilities were found to adapt, and consequently modify their behaviour by disassociating from their disability in order to fit in.

 

Conclusion: The study highlights the need for creating spaces and engagement within an HEI context that both challenge negative discourses of disability, and at the same time, promote positive representations of disability.

 

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020

“Better to Make Yourself Invisible” Family violence against people with disabilities in Mexico

RIOS-ESPINOSA, Carlos
June 2020

Expand view

People with disabilities in Mexico can face severe abuse and neglect by their families with little protection or support from the government. This report documents how the lack of policies to support independent living can increase the risk of family violence and abuse for people with disabilities. It also documents the barriers people with disabilities face in accessing protection from abuse and justice on an equal basis with others, and documents serious concerns regarding implementation of procedural accommodations to ensure that people with disabilities can participate fully and equally in the justice system.

 

Based on research in 2018 and 2019, this report documents violence committed by family members against people with disabilities in four Mexican states: Oaxaca, Jalisco, Nuevo León, and Mexico City.  Interviews were carried out with 24 women and 14 men with disabilities. 

 

The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Amid COVID-19

UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS
Ministry of Social Development
Independent Commission for Human Rights
June 2020

Expand view

This document make specific recommendations on support and protection to be provided to persons with disabilities during the COVID-19 response, and to ensure that appropriate measures are in place to maintain their active participation as well as to avoid discrimination at all levels against them

Access to SRH services for persons with disabilities: mapping the evidence

LAGAAY, Mary
MONTEATH-van DOK, Adrienne
June 2020

Expand view

A blog looking at the body of evidence for persons with disabilities (PWD) outlines that historically PWD have been denied their SRH (sexual and reproductive health) rights, despite having the same sexual needs as people without disabilities. It goes into to comment on the knowledge gaps that still need closing and to introduce an Evidence Gap Map

COVID-19 in humanitarian contexts: no excuses to leave persons with disabilities behind! Evidence from HI's operations in humanitarian settings

HUMANITY & INCLUSION (HI)
June 2020

Expand view

This collection and review of evidence aims to illustrate how the COVID-19 crisis triggers disproportionate risks and barriers for persons with disabilities  (men, women, boys and girls) living in humanitarian settings. It highlights recommendations for humanitarian actors, to enhance inclusive action, aligned with existing guidance and learnings on disability inclusion. It is based on evidence, including testimonies, collected by HI programs in 19 countries of intervention. Special efforts were made to reflect the voices of persons with different types of disabilities, genders and ages, residing in different geographical areas and living circumstances, including refugee and internally displaced persons’ settlements and hostcommunities.

 

Evidence has been collected through primary data collection among HI teams and partners, working in countries impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in April/May 2020. Data was extracted from assessments conducted by HI and partners in Bangladesh, Egypt, Haïti, Indonesia, Philippines, Jordan, Lebanon, Somaliland and Togo. Testimonies from affected communities, staff and partners were collected in Kenya, Myanmar, Pakistan, Palestine, Philippines, Somaliland, South Sudan, Rwanda, Thailand, Uganda and Yemen.  

 

Displaced persons with disabilities face additional challenges to protect themselves and their families and barriers to access services, in camps that were not built for COVID-19

Inclusion of persons with disabilities in the humanitarian COVID-19 response. Webinar

June 2020

Expand view

First webinar of the project "Phase 2 - Leave no one behind!: Mainstreaming Disability in Humanitarian Action". The project is funded by the German Federal Foreign Office and led by Handicap International e.V. (HI). It is implemented together with the Christoffel Blindenmission e.V. (CBM) and the Institute for International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict (IFHV) of the Ruhr-University Bochum. The project aims at mainstreaming disability in humanitarian coordination mechanisms, strengthening the capacities of German humanitarian actors and their local partners, and improving data collection on the inclusion of persons with disabilities.

Policy Brief: COVID-19 and People on the Move

UNITED NATIONS
June 2020

Expand view

COVID-19 leaves few lives and places untouched. But its impact is harshest for those groups who were already in vulnerable situations before the crisis. This is particularly true for many people on the move, such as migrants in irregular situations, migrant workers with precarious livelihoods, or working in the informal economy, victims of trafficking in persons as well as people fleeing their homes because of persecution, war, violence, human rights violations or disaster, whether within their own countries — internally displaced persons (IDPs) — or across international borders — refugees and asylum-seekers.

 

The disproportionate impact of the COVID19 pandemic on people on the move presents itself as three interlocking crises, exacerbating existing vulnerabilities: a health crisis; a socio-economic crisis and a protection crisis.

 

This Policy Brief offers four basic tenets to guide collective response:

  • Exclusion is costly in the long-run whereas inclusion pays off for everyone
  • The response to COVID-19 and protecting the human rights of people on the move are not mutually exclusive
  • No-one is safe until everyone is safe
  • People on the move are part of the solution

Persons affected by leprosy and the COVID-19 global health crisis

GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP FOR ZERO LEPROSY (GPZL) WORKING GROUP 2
June 2020

Expand view

The COVID-19 pandemic has deeply impacted leprosy control and prevention and the lives of persons affected by the disease.

Seven consultative calls were carried out with persons affected individuals and organizations from April – May 2020, speaking with over 100 individuals from more than 25 organizations from 22 different countries. The first six calls were conducted based on geographical region, including: Latin America, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific. The final call was for women affected by leprosy.

The following issues were raised on a consistent basis, across geographies, as major concerns for persons affected during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • Access to health care
  • Access to fundamental goods
  • Access to government support
  • Access to stable livelihoods
  • Access to information about COVID-19
  • Intersecting vulnerabilities

Inclusion Works Uganda Situational Analysis

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
June 2020

Expand view

This situational analysis (SITAN) addresses the question: “what is the current situation in relation to formal sector employment for persons with disabilities in Uganda?”. It has been prepared for the Inclusion Works programme (which works on disability inclusive formal employment in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda), to better understand the current context and available evidence in Uganda, and will be helpful for anyone interested in disability inclusion, especially in relation to employment, in Uganda. It focuses on persons with disabilities, employers, policy, the disability movement, and partnerships. This SITAN has been briefly updated from the June 2019 SITAN.

 

The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the UK government or members of the Inclusion Works consortium.

Inclusion Works Kenya Situational Analysis

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
June 2020

Expand view

This situational analysis (SITAN) addresses the question: “what is the current situation in relation to formal sector employment for persons with disabilities in Kenya?”. It has been prepared for the Inclusion Works programme (which works on disability inclusive formal employment in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda), to better understand the current context and available evidence in Kenya, and will be helpful for anyone interested in disability inclusion, especially in relation to employment, in Kenya. It focuses on persons with disabilities, employers, policy, the disability movement, and partnerships. This SITAN has been briefly updated from the June 2019 SITAN.

 

The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the UK government or members of the Inclusion Works consortium.

Inclusion Works Bangladesh Situational Analysis

THOMPSON, Stephen
June 2020

Expand view

This situational analysis (SITAN) addresses the question: “what is the current situation in relation to formal sector employment for persons with disabilities in Bangladesh?”. It has been prepared for the Inclusion Works programme (which works on disability inclusive formal employment in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda), to better understand the current context and available evidence in Bangladesh, and will be helpful for anyone interested in disability inclusion, especially in relation to employment. It focuses on persons with disabilities, employers, policy, the disability movement, and partnerships. This situational analysis (SITAN) synthesises the most recent existing literature and evidence (drawing on government and non-government sources available online) about Bangladesh generally and on factors relating to persons with disabilities involvement in formal employment.

 

The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the UK government or members of the Inclusion Works consortium.

Pages

E-bulletin

Source e-bulletin on Disability and Inclusion

Subscribe to updates