Webinar: Disability in the Context of the Coronavirus Pandemic

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Please note that this is a virtual event taking place via Zoom. If you are interested in attending, please register for the event on Eventbrite. Once you register, you will receive automatic email notifications 48 hours and 2 hours before the event with the Zoom invitation. Click on the orange 'View Now' button in the notification emails to access the Zoom meeting link, ID and password and direct yourself to the webinar. 

Please also note that this event will be recorded, with the exception of any live audience questions.


The COVID-19 pandemic has led to far reaching changes to the law affecting disabled people in the UK, from ‘shielding’ the vulnerable to changes to legislation under the Coronavirus Act 2020. The latter statute has altered the number of professionals needed to make a hospital order under the 1983 Mental Health Act and led to 'easements' on the requirements on local authorities to provide care for disabled people under the Care Act 2014. National charities have also highlighted the discriminatory impact of wider government policies in their handling of the pandemic. After ten years of austerity, this tumultuous context creates an even greater imperative to look forward and develop a vision for disability rights for the next generation. We urgently need to find ways to prevent inequality from becoming starker and to protect the dignity and human rights of disabled people in the context of the global coronavirus pandemic. This vision must reflect disability’s intersection with other protected characteristics, digital inclusion and climate change.


1. Dr Brian Sloan, University of Cambridge (on “easements” of the 2014 Care Act duties under the Coronavirus Act 2020 and their possible impact on practice and dignity of disabled people)

2. Professor Jonathan Herring, University of Oxford (on shielding the vulnerable from the coronavirus)

3. Kamran Mallick, CEO of Disability Rights UK (on food poverty and access to supermarket deliveries for disabled people not on the government’s shielded list)

4. Lindsay Lee, formerly of the WHO and alumna of the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford (on disability and global health policy in the COVID-19 context