COVID-19

WID joins disability rights and emergency management experts from across the country in issuing urgent calls to action for immediate strategies and solutions from governments at every level, including local, state, federal, tribal and territorial, to address the specific needs of persons with disabilities throughout the COVID-19 outbreak and all public health emergencies. Check back regularly for updates as the situation continues to unfold.

WID’s Response

WID is working in collaboration with the Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies, the National Council on Independent Living Emergency Preparedness Subcommittee, and other local, national, and international groups to get people with disabilities the information, care, and supports to survive this pandemic.

On May 7 and June 4, 2020, WID was joined by over 600 disability rights leaders from 29 countries to discuss the needs of people with disabilities and disability-led organizations in rapid disaster response. Join us for our upcoming launch event on July 9 to hear more about what we learned, and what actions we’re taking next.

Launch of the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration

Please join WID, The Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies, and ONG Inclusive for the launch of the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration on Thursday, July 9 at 9 AM Pacific Time/12 PM Eastern Time (NY Time)/4 PM UTC. Click the registration link and the linked image below for more information.

Registration link for the launch of the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration

Launch Event: Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration. Thursday, July 9, 2020. Logo for the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration. 6 arrows wrapping around an invisible sphere, each a different color - orange, red, purple, blue, green, and gray.

Global Disability + Disaster Town Hall Meetings

Session 2: Thursday, June 4, 2020

Recorded session + transcript:

Transcript for WID Disability + Disaster Global Town Hall, Session 2

Session 1: May 7, 2020

Recorded session + transcript:

Transcript for Global Disability and Disaster Town Hall session, May 7 2020

Click on the linked images below to read all of the calls to action and urgent recommendations:

Text: Global Disability + Disaster Town Hall Meetings. Collage of ears, speech bubbles, hands signing, and a hand using a communication board.Text over ACLU banner: WID Joins Petition to US Department of Health & Human Services for urgent relief RE: COVID-19 Response in Nursing Homes and Other Congregate Settings Where People with Disabilities LiveText overlay: National Call to Action - Survey. Icon of clipboard with sun and globe. Mint green text on deep blue background, reads: National Council on Disability COVID-19 letter to HHS Office for Civil RightsText overlay - recommendations for immediate action: rights and needs of people with disabilities who use personal assistance services & supports, COVID-19 World map of COVID-19 outbreak as of March 3, 2020, with text overlay: Urgent call to action: The Rights & Needs of People with Disabilities in COVID-19 Preparedness & Response.

Over 170 organizations have signed on to the original Call to Action and the list of supporters keeps growing. To sign on to the COVID-19 Call to Action, fill out the Call to Action sign-on form.

View list of signatories to the Call to Action

Additionally, read and share the Open letter to Vice President Mike Pence.

You can learn more about WID’s priorities for COVID-19 and all emergency response, as well as our CEO/Executive Director Marcie Roth’s 20+ years of experience working in disability inclusive emergency preparedness and response, via this recorded webinar from the Connecticut State Independent Living Council and Disability Rights Connecticut:

Upcoming events

Revisioning Recovery: Virtual World Premiere & Discussion

Join WID and Working Films for the virtual premiere of Revisioning Recovery: Films Uncovering the Roots of Disaster.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020: 3:30 PM – 5:30 PM PDT

Livestream via Zoom and Facebook Live

Across the nation, communities are experiencing the same discrimination that is present in all disaster response. Black and brown individuals, low income communities, undocumented residents, people with disabilities, and older adults are constantly an afterthought. Revisioning Recovery uncovers the root cause of these inequities, dismantles age old narratives, and advocates for new ways forward that provide Just Recovery for all.

This event will include a post-screening discussion featuring Chrishelle Palay [Director of the Houston Organizing Movement for Equity (HOME) Coalition] , Ilene Jacobs [Director of Litigation, Advocacy and Training at California Rural Legal Assistance], and Marcie Roth [Executive Director of the World Institute on Disability].

The films will be available in English with English and Spanish subtitles and English audio description. The post-screening discussion will include English live captioning, Spanish interpretation, and International Sign. To request additional options, please contact hhearn@workingfilms.org.

Learn more about Revisioning Recovery: Working Films website page on Revisioning Recovery

Link to register for the virtual premiere via Eventbrite

2020 Partners in Preparedness Summit Series: Disability Justice During Crisis

Hosted by Arizona Statewide Independent Living Council and made possible by the Arizona Department of Health Services.
Partners: National Council on Independent Living, Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies, and the World Institute on Disability

The 2020 Partners in Preparedness Summit Series starts with a webconference on June 30th, and is followed by weekly webinars on the theme of Disability Justice During Crisis until a concluding in-person event on September 4th at SkySong Center in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Kickoff Webconference: Disability Justice During Crisis

Tuesday June 30, 2020 from 9am to 4pm (Pacific/Arizona Time)

Featuring speakers including WID’s Marcie Roth

For more information:

Link to Partners in Preparedness Summit Series website

Link to RSVP for the Partners in Preparedness Summit Series

Link to Facebook Event Page

The Rights of People with Disabilities in Disasters

The rights of people with disabilities do not disappear in times of crisis. For information on the rights of people with disabilities in all disasters and public health emergencies and reporting rights violations, in the US and globally, please visit our Rights of People with Disabilities in Disasters & Public Health Emergencies page.

For more information on the rights of people with disabilities specifically in the COVID-19 pandemic, we recommend the following resources from our colleagues:

Disability Rights International (DRI): COVID-19 Disability Rights Monitor

The Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF): Preventing Discrimination in the Treatment of COVID-19 Patients: The Illegality of Medical Rationing on the Basis of Disability

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), Office for Civil Rights (OCR): Bulletin March 28, 2020– Civil Rights, HIPAA, and the Coronavirus Disease

Independent Living Research Utilization (ILRU): Survey to report cases of COVID-19-Related Forced Institutionalization

National Disability Rights Network (NDRN): Know Your Rights COVID-19 video series:

·       Transportation Rights

·       Housing Rights

·       Healthcare Rights: The Effects of COVID-19 on the African American Community

·       Stop The Spread in Jails & Prisons

·       Indian Health Services & Medical Rationing

·       Domestic Violence: The Right to be Safe at Home

·       Education Rights as a College Student

The Center for Dignity in Healthcare for People with Disabilities: COVID-19 Factsheet for People with Disabilities (Accessible PDF)

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC): What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws

Communication First: COVID-19 Communication Rights Toolkit

Gill vs. Pennsylvania Department of Health: Federal lawsuit against the Pennsylvania Department of Health filed on April 28 in Eastern District Court on behalf of nursing home residents for “denying appropriate safeguards and care to nursing home residents.”

Full text (PDFs):

Amended Complaint, Gill v. PA Department of Health (PDF)

Plaintiff Motion for Class Action Status, Gill v. PA Department of Health (PDF)

Firms representing the nursing home residents: Shrager & Sachs, Kanter, Bernstein & Kardon PCMassa, Butler, Giglione and Robert Peirce & Associates P.C.

News article with more details via the York Daily RecordPa. nursing home deaths spike 550 percent in one month, as state faces federal lawsuit by Candy Woodall

Resources

Additional resources for individuals with disabilities, disability-led organizations, and for people looking to understand the needs and concerns of people with disabilities in the COVID-19 pandemic.

More general resources for people with disabilities in disasters can be found on our Resources for People with Disabilities in Disasters and Emergencies page.

The Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies: COVID-19 Community-Wide Resources (Google Doc, updating continually)

National Disability COVID-19 Healthcare Support and Advocacy Hotline: 

Smartphone with speech bubble and text overlay. Text: National Disability COVID-19 Healthcare Support and Advocacy Hotline. (800)-626-4959. Call us if you are disabled and need COVID-19-related medical advocacy or other support. Contact Disability Underground at: contact@disabilityunderground.org. In collaboration with The Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies. #DisabledNotDisposable #NobodyIsDisposable #WeAreEssential #COVID19.

Image description: Smartphone with speech bubble and text overlay. Text: National Disability COVID-19 Healthcare Support and Advocacy Hotline. (800)-626-4959. Call us if you are disabled and need COVID-19-related medical advocacy or other support. Contact Disability Underground at: contact@disabilityunderground.org. In collaboration with The Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies.

Hashtags: Disabled Not Disposable, Nobody Is Disposable, We Are Essential, COVID19.

World Health Organization (WHO): Disability considerations during the COVID-19 outbreak

ONG Inclusiva: First International Survey on People with Disabilities and COVID-19 (PDF)

International Disability Alliance (IDA): COVID-19 Resource – Key advocacy messages, questions to ask on inclusion and signpost to resources to learn more (PDF)

International Disability Alliance (IDA): Toward a Disability-Inclusive COVID-19 Response: 10 recommendations (PDF)

United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction – Regional Office for the Americas and the Caribbean: Guidance for People with Disabilities in the face of COVID-19 in the Americas and the Caribbean

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC): What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws

American Association on Health and Disability (AAHD): COVID-19 & Disability Videos (6)

Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN): COVID-19 Case Tracker: Documenting the impact of COVID-19 on people with disabilities in congregate settings

House Committee on Education and Labor: Member Briefing: Addressing the Impact of COVID-19 on Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities

National Disability Institute (NDI): Listening Sessions – The Impact of COVID-19 on the Disability Community

University of California: Creating Accessible eCourses Checklist

June Isaacson Kailes, Disability Policy Consultant: Preparing for Hospitalization During COVID-19 Pandemic: A Checklist for People with Disabilities

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC): Receiving Economic Impact Payments

National Disability Institute (NDI): Financial Resilience Center with COVID-19-specific information, covering: COVID-19 Stimulus; Employment/Unemployment; Public Benefits; Money Management; Housing, Food and Healthcare; Scams and more.

The Center for Public Representation: The CARES Act and Disability Priorities – What’s In It, What’s Not

Sins Invalid: Social Distancing and Crip Survival: A Disability Centered Response to COVID-19

Spina Bifida Association: Coronavirus (COVID-19): What People with Spina Bifida Need to Know

Autism Society: Coronavirus Response & Resources Tool Kit

Novo Nordisk: 90 Days of Free Insulin to Those Left Uninsured Because of the Coronavirus

NYU Center for Disability Studies: Disability Justice and COVID-19 Resources

FCC: Guidelines requiring televised emergency information to be accessible

CDC: Guidance for People with Disabilities

CDC: Responding to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Among People Experiencing Unsheltered Homelessness

CDC: Disability and Health State Programs

CDC: Releases New ASL Videos

COVAID: Connects community volunteers with those who need help by location and mutual aid networks nearby

Press

COVID-19 press referencing WID, our board members, and staff:

(June 23, 2020) American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU): ACLU, SEIU, and Disability Rights Organizations File Petition Demanding HHS Mitigate the COVID-19 Crisis in America’s Nursing Homes and Other Congregate Settings for People with Disabilities 

(June 10, 2020) AXSChat: AXSChat with Marcie Roth – Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer for the World Institute on Disability, hosted by Neil Miliken and Debra Ruh

(June 9, 2020) Disability Matters podcast: How WID Is Addressing Needs of People with Disabilities During COVID-19, hosted by Joyce Bender

(May 14, 2020) Ruh Global Impact: Facebook Live Interview with Marcie Roth by Debra Ruh

(April 30, 2020) The Chronicle of Philanthropy:  In Covid-19 Crisis, Philanthropy’s Attention Must Focus on People With Disabilities by Rich Besser and Darren Walker

(April 3, 2020) Brown Girl Green podcast via the Indie Creative Network: Climate Change & People with Disabilities: How’d we get here? Hosted by Kristy Drutman

(April 2, 2020) American Council of the Blind (ACB): Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities, on ACB Advocacy Update, hosted by Claire Stanley and Clark Rachfal, interviewing Marcie Roth.

(March 18, 2020) BBC interview with Marcie Roth on COVID-19 (audio with transcript)


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