Inclusion Scotland carried out an online survey throughout April 2020 to find out what impact the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic was having on disabled people. Over 800 disabled people and their carers responded.
The findings stark. From losing vital social care support and being left unable to get out of bed to fears about involuntary ‘do not resuscitate’ notices and job losses. People told us they were at the end of the line. 15 people told us they felt suicidal.
We quickly issued a short initial findings report of our survey to expose the issues that disabled people were facing, bringing them to the attention of the officials and organisations who could do something about them and start listening to disabled people.
Rights At Risk is a more comprehensive look at our survey findings. It takes stock of the situation disabled people were in before the pandemic, what happened to disabled people during the first months of the crisis as emergency responses were rolled out, what the long-term impact of the crisis might be for disabled people and what needs to happen now. We quote directly from the real life examples that people shared with us.
The Covid-19 crisis is far from over, and while we recognise that some issues are being addressed, disabled people are still experiencing consequences that are likely to continue, and even worsen. This report highlights and challenges these issues as well as the impact of the many decades of exclusion and discrimination against disabled people which are the backdrop to the crisis. We must ensure that disabled people must never again find ourselves so excluded and so poorly supported that we suffer the levels of despair highlighted in this report.