The European Commission has published a series of reports examining the affect of the COVID-19 pandemic on persons with disabilities, including an overarching synthesis report, as well as individual reports on each Member State. The reports reflect on initiatives undertaken at the EU level and draws on structured reports from the European Disability Expertise network about developments in their respective countries. Some of the recommendations to the European Commission include:
• To take measures, including via European Semester and Social Pillar processes, to encourage Member States to ensure that relevant data is inclusive of people living in institutions
• To focus implementation of the Strategy for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2021-2030 on addressing the underpinning social factors that have been shown to place people with disabilities at particular risk
• To actively foster the use of EU recovery funds on disability specific initiatives and the embedding of disability-inclusive approaches in broader initiatives.
Some of the recommendations to Governments in Member States include:
• To review and strengthen systems for disaggregating data on the basis of disability, to allow for a better understanding of the impact of COVID-19 and other events and factors on people with disabilities
• To carry out public health evaluations of care settings and the factors exposing residents to infection from COVID-19 and other communicable diseases
• To identify, maintain and build upon ways of working introduced during the pandemic to ensure the accessibility of public.
The synthesis paper and individual country reports can be accessed at: https://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=1540&langId=en