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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.

Persons with disabilities in a just transition to a low-carbon economy

HASAN, Maria
November 2019

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Implementing a just transition to a low-carbon economy that aims to leave no one behind will require a context-specific and locally determined mix of legal standards, social protection, skills development and attitudinal transformation that create an enabling environment for green jobs to perpetuate and decent work opportunities for persons with disabilities to proliferate. If done right, a just transition towards environmentally sustainable economies and societies for all can contribute to the goals of achieving social justice, decent work, social inclusion and the eradication of poverty. At this unique time that climate action is accelerating and the transition to green economies has started to take form, a just transition - that is inherently disability-inclusive - represents a unique opportunity to shape a future that works for all.

 

Topics discussed include: Persons with disabilities in a world of work confronted by climate change; Understanding the future of the world of work; Existing frameworks to guide action; An inclusive transition to a low-carbon economy; Key recommendations

Women and girls with disabilities. Needs of survivors of gender based violence and services offered to them

BURGHAL, Waseem
March 2019

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This study on GBV among women and girls with disabilities was conducted by UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund) with the support of Denmark in the context of the GBV Sub-Cluster Strategy 2018-2020. It was based on a needs analysis and mapping of services offered to women and girls with disabilities aged 15 and older who are survivors of gender-based violence (GBV) in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, particularly in view of the poor protection, care and social services available to women survivors of violence. Its objective was to map the available services; analyze major gaps and challenges related to service delivery; identify roles and responsibilities of stakeholders and service providers, including stakeholder coordination, legislation and policies, capacity, prevention and response services, the referral process and accountability; as well as to make recommendations and propose interventions to address the weaknesses in the protection system for women and girls with disabilities in Palestine.

Disability and nutrition programming: evidence and learning (Disability Inclusion Helpdesk Report No. 6)

HOLDEN, Jenny
CORBY, Nick
February 2019

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This document provides a rapid review of the evidence on approaches to ensuring people with disabilities are reached through nutrition programming, focusing on children, adolescents, and women of reproductive age in low and middle-income countries (LMICs). The purpose of this review is to support DFID advisers and partners designing and implementing programmes with nutrition components to ensure they are more inclusive of people with disabilities. After outlining the methodology in Section 2, Section 3 includes an overview of available evidence on what works to ensure nutrition programming reaches people with disabilities, as well as an assessment of the strength of the evidence, and highlighting key research gaps. Section 4 provides a summary on factors affecting access for people with disabilities, and Section 5 concludes by drawing a series of considerations for policy and programming to ensure that people with disabilities are not left behind when it comes to government-led and development partner-led programmes to tackle malnutrition. Case studies of approaches are included in annex 1 to give further insights on promising practices and key learnings

Family planning for women and girls with disabilities

FRASER, Erika
CORBY, Nick
January 2019

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Individual, environmental, attitudinal and institutional factors affecting access to and uptake of family planning for women and girls with disabilities in low and middle income countries are explored through a rapid literature review. Evidence of good practice concerning increasing full free and informed contraceptive choice is also examined.

 

Disability Inclusion Helpdesk Report. Pilot 2

DFID’s strategy for disability inclusive development 2018-23

December 2018

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The UK Department for International Development (DFID)'s vision is a world where all people with disabilities, women, men, girls and boys, in all stages of their lives, are engaged, empowered and able to exercise and enjoy their rights on an equal basis with others, contributing to poverty reduction, peace and stability. A world where no-one is left behind.

Over the next five years DFID will prioritise four strategic pillars for action: (i) inclusive education, (ii) social protection, (iii) economic empowerment, and (iv) humanitarian action. To complement this focus DFID are adopting three cross-cutting areas, vital to disability inclusion, which will be consistently and systematically addressed in all of their work: (v) tackling stigma and discrimination; (vi) empowering girls and women with disabilities; and (vii) access to appropriate assistive technology.

DFID have introduced a new set of standards for all DFID business units to meet. The standards require all country offices and departments to; review their leadership and culture, engage with people with disabilities, influence others, adapt programming and improve data and evidence.

Children with disabilities in situations of armed conflict - a discussion paper

THOMAS, Edward
et al
November 2018

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During armed conflict, children with disabilities are caught in a vicious cycle of violence, social polarization, deteriorating services and deepening poverty. Global estimates suggest there are between 93 million and 150 million children with disabilities under the age of 15.Given that disability is often not reported due to stigma there is reason to believe actual prevalence could be much higher. Although efforts to ensure the fulfilment of their rights have improved, girls and boys with disabilities continue to remain among the most marginalized and excluded segment of the population. This is amplified during situations of armed conflict. The barriers to full participation they face on a day-to-day basis are intensified and compounded when infrastructure is destroyed, and services and systems are compromised and made inaccessible. This results in the further exclusion and marginalization of children with disabilities, and prevents them from accessing schooling, health and psychosocial support, or a means of escape from conflict.

 

When systems and services break down, children are also left more susceptible to violence. Injuries sustained by many children during armed conflict may also lead to long-term impairments. There are six grave violations of children’s rights and protection in armed conflict that are on the agenda of the United Nations (UN) Security Council; killing and maiming, recruitment and use of children, rape or other sexual violence, abduction, attacks on schools or hospitals, and denial of humanitarian access. Governments around the world have committed themselves to respect, promote, and fulfil the rights of children with disabilities, including in situations of armed conflict, and progress is being made. Efforts by a broad range of actors to implement the CRPD, CRC and other human rights instruments include the development of standards to address the rights and needs of persons with disabilities in humanitarian crises, and guidance on making humanitarian response, development and peacebuilding more inclusive. Efforts to improve the collection and use of data concerning children and adults with disabilities are also underway. Yet, as this discussion paper makes clear, much more needs to be done. Investments in disability-inclusive humanitarian action and recovery from crises will pay off, contributing towards a dividend of peace built on greater equality, tolerance and justice. 

Young persons with disabilities: Global study on ending gender-based violence, and realising sexual and reproductive health and rights

McCLOSKEY, Megan
MEYERS, Stephen
July 2018

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This study provides an analysis on the situation of young persons with disabilities concerning discrimination and gender-based violence, including the impact on their sexual and reproductive health and rights. It also provides an assessment of legal, policy and programming developments and specific good practices in service delivery as well as best-standard prevention and protection measures. Finally, policy and programming recommendations are provided to assist in greater promotion of the rights of young persons with disabilities, with a particular emphasis on preventing and responding to gender-based violence, and realizing sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Disability stigma in developing countries

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
May 2018

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This K4D helpdesk report, commissioned by UK DFID, answers the question "What are the core drivers behind stereotypes, prejudice (including pity/shame etc), and harmful practices against persons with disabilities in developing countries and what promising strategies/pathways for addressing these drivers have been identified?" using desk research.

 

Across the world stereotypes, prejudice, and stigma contribute to the discrimination and exclusion experienced by people with disabilities and their families in all aspects of their lives. This rapid review looks at available evidence on the drivers of disability stigma in developing countries, and promising strategies for addressing these. Most of the available evidence uncovered by this rapid review comes from Sub-Saharan Africa, and is from a mix of academic and grey literature. Evidence gaps remain. The available literature has focused more on studying the victims of stigmatisation than the stigmatisers. 

Invisible victims of sexual violence. Access to justice for women and girls with disabilities in India

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH
April 2018

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This report is based on 17 cases of sexual violence against women and girls with disabilities in eight Indian states. It comes five years after The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013 (the 2013 amendments) were adopted in India. It follows Human Rights Watch’s November 2017 report “Everyone Blames Me”: Barriers to Justice and Support Services for Sexual Assault Survivors in India, which found that rape survivors still face significant barriers obtaining justice and critical support services because legal and other reforms have not been fully realised.

This report finds that while the 2013 amendments have made significant progress in responding to the widespread challenges that victims of sexual violence endure, they have yet to properly develop and implement support for survivors with disabilities in the form of trainings and reforms throughout the criminal justice system. It highlights gaps in enforcement and calls for concrete measures to address the needs of women and girls with disabilities seeking justice for abuse. 

Disability inclusion in disaster risk management - Promising practices and opportunities for enhanced engagements

GUERNSEY, Katherine
SCHERRER, Valerie
April 2018

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Disaster risk management aims to address vulnerability in order to reduce risk and therefore needs to consider the full range of vulnerability drivers, including those that affect persons with disabilities. This report presents the results of comprehensive review of the state of practice in disability-inclusive Disaster risk management (DRM) undertaken by GFDRR (Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery). The report is intended to help World Bank staff incorporate persons with disabilities and a disability perspective into their ongoing DRM work. The report will also be of interest to other development actors and stakeholders working on DRM.

Good practice guide: embedding inclusion of older people and people with disabilities in humanitarian policy and practice Lessons learnt from the ADCAP programme

AKERKAR, Supriya
BHARDWAJ, Rhea
2018

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This guide shares good practices and challenges that have emerged through the experience of the Age and Disability Capacity Programme (ADCAP) implementing partners, in embedding inclusion of older people and people with disabilities within their humanitarian policies and practices. All mainstream and specialist organisations engaged in humanitarian responses can learn and benefit from this experience. This guide complements the ‘Humanitarian inclusion standards for older people and people with disabilities’ (see Appendix 4), by documenting practices that will help humanitarian organisations to systematically include older people and people with disabilities.

Nine change themes that reflect successful inclusion practices emerging from the ADCAP experience are presented. Each theme includes analysis — using examples of action from ADCAP implementing organisations, a set of good practice action points, and case studies detailing how change was brought about in different implementing organisations

Disability in South Sudan. K4D Helpdesk Report

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
March 2018

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Decades of conflict in South Sudan, pre and post-independence in 2011, poverty and poor access to services have increased the rate of disability and rendered people with disabilities more marginalised and excluded as a result of the numerous attitudinal, environmental, and institutional barriers they face, and the lack of concerted efforts to include them. This rapid review identifies the available evidence on the experiences of people with disabilities living in South Sudan.

Labour market inclusion of people with disabilities: Paper presented at the 1st Meeting of the G20 Employment Working Group

INTERNATIONAL LABOUR ORGANISATION (ILO)
ORGANISATION FOR ECONOMIC COOPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT (OECD)
February 2018

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A common understanding of how to approach the employment of persons with disabilities in a way that respects social justice, human rights and decent work as a key element of more inclusive economies and societies is sought. Having the employment of persons with disabilities on the G20 agenda is also a reflection of the increased attention to the rights of persons with disabilities both at a national as well as at an international level. The contribution focuses on one particular group of people with disabilities, namely those who may have been born with disabilities or may have developed some during their lives, but either way have remaining work capacities and are at working age. 

Employment-to-population ratio statistics for persons with and without disabilities are provided for some of the G20 countries. Economic and social determinants of low employment rates of people with disabilities are discussed.

 

Policies across G20 countries for the labour market inclusion of persons with disabilities are discussed

  • demand side - promoting disability inclusion within the private and public sector
  • supply side - ensuring that persons with disabilities have the skills as demanded by the labour market
  • making the environment more enabling 
  • mental health as a special challenge
  • measurement and quality data to inform evidence-based policies

 

Disability in Somalia

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
January 2018

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People with disabilities have been identified as a particularly marginalised and at risk group within Somali society as a result of the numerous attitudinal, environmental, and institutional barriers they face, and the lack of concerted efforts to include them . This rapid review identifies available evidence on the experiences of people with disabilities living in Somalia. It was found that there are still numerous evidence gaps in relation to the experiences of people with disabilities living in Somalia.

Childhood disability in Malaysia: a study of knowledge, attitudes and practices

MOORE, Katie
BEDFORD, Juliet
November 2017

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This study was carried out to assess the knowledge, attitudes and practices of society towards children with disabilities, the children themselves, and their peers in Malaysia. The study took place in Selangor, Kelantan, Sabah and Sarawak. There were 756 total respondents/participants including government ministries, community members, service providers, care givers and children and adolescents both with and without disabilities. 

Stigma, disability and development

BOND DISABILITY AND DEVELOPMENT (DDG)
November 2017

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This briefing considers how stigma affects people with disabilities and why challenging stigma is a critical issue for development.

 

Examples of successful efforts by UK non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to reduce and eliminate stigma are briefly outlined including: self help groups; alliances between groups (including DPOs); staff training; skills training and wider awareness raising.

Still left behind: Pathways to inclusive education for girls with disabilities

ABU AL-GHAIB, Ola
ANDRAE, Karen
GONDWE, Rachel
LEONARD CHESHIRE DISABILITY
June 2017

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This progress review aims to: provide a synthesis of the understanding of the additional barriers that girls with disabilities face in education; highlight effective or promising approaches and programmes addressing these barriers, including policies and legislation; point to gaps in evidence; and provide recommendations on a way forward. An internet search of relevant grey and academic literature on gender-responsive inclusive education was carried out. A search of websites of (inter) national non-governmental organisations, donors, and research institutions on the subject of gender-responsive inclusive education was conducted. In addition, requests for information on gender-responsive inclusive education interventions were submitted to platforms such as the Pelican Initiative and the Gender and Development Network UK. Subsequent referral to contact persons was followed up via email and phone with requests for sharing of studies, evaluations, progress reports, and other relevant documents of interventions.

Support and guidance for the report provided by UN Girls’ Education Initiative (UNGEI)

The right to live independently and be included in the community : Addressing barriers to independent living across the globe

ANGELOVNA-MLADENOVA, Lilia
June 2017

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"This reports looks at the main barriers to the realisation of disabled people’s right to live independently and be included in the community, which is set out in Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). They are grouped in seven broad areas: (1) misunderstanding and misuse of key terms, (2) negative attitudes and stigma, (3) lack of support for families, (4) prevalence of institutional services, (5) barriers related to community support services, (6) barriers in mainstream services and facilities, and (7) barriers, concerning other CRPD provisions, with effect on Article 19. A set of recommendations is also provided, outlining measures required to address these barriers"

Employment rights of persons with disabilities in India

RIOUX, Marcia
et al
2017

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This report presents an overview of individual experiences and systemic data concerning the right to work for persons with disabilities in India. The report is part of the AWARE Project conducted by DRPI in Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh, India. A total of 78 people with various physical, sensory and intellectual disabilities participated in this study. The research team also consists of people with various disabilities. Individual experiences have been collected through individual interviews or focus groups discussions. Information was collected about the barriers and challenges to participate in the workforce. People with disabilities were asked by other people with disabilities to tell their own stories about when they have been left out, treated badly or prevented from participating in the workforce because of their disability. These stories give us information about the real human rights situation faced by persons with disabilities. Personal interviews were conducted in Hyderabad and Secundarabad cities in Andhra Pradesh, India. A total number of 78 people were interviewed. The data was collected, collated and interviews conducted by persons with disabilities

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