Weekly Poll Results – COVID-19: Equality and Human Rights (Week Beginning 27 April 2020)

Question: Have there been specific equality or human rights impacts on groups of people as a response to the virus?


Yes – 62% (50 respondents) No –  38% (31 respondents)

Your Comments:

Health and Social Care

Our members highlighted the equality and human rights impacts on disabled people from not being able to access health and social care, which in some cases has resulted on greater reliance on family, friends, and neighbours.

“Carers have been utterly neglected up until now.”

“The right to treatment/health care has been reduced. Some people have been proactively targeted for Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) forms to sign without discussion or applying a person-centred approach.”

“The restrictions place particular constraints on people with physical and mental disabilities and impairments. For example, not being able to access normal support mechanisms or treatment.”

“My social care stopped, and I now have to rely on family members to provide my daily at home care. I feel like I’m a burden on my family, but also so grateful for all that they do for me.”


“The older generation are being targeted.”

“It seems that the elderly is being marginalised during this time”

“Elderly, disabled and unwell with no family locally are having a rough time.”

“I believe that the young are disproportionately affected, which is made even worse by the fact that they appear to be at the lowest risk. The Government should consider a staggered approach when reducing the lockdown to alleviate these issues first.”


Concerns were raised about access to information for people with a communication impairment. This includes barriers created by face masks, social distancing and a shift towards telephone contact only.

“From the deafscotland perspective, restrictions on rights to communication and language, information, children/family life and rights to freedom too. There are a number of barriers to access to information at the right time/right language and format etc. The mitigating factors increase social and environmental barriers: masks, other barriers in shops etc, distancing of 2 metres is greater than range of hearing aids, impact of deafness related isolation is compounded and increases anxiety.”

“Trying to get help from organisations such as GPs and Tesco and NHS24 who refuse to reply to emails because they are “too busy” and insist on telephone contact only which clearly discriminates against deaf people.”

“Deafness – people wearing masks and 2m social distancing rule will have an impact on how deaf people communicate.”

“Many companies no longer offer email contact in order to contact customer services, only telephone, Tesco being one of them! This is again discriminatory for disabled people who cannot use telephones!”