Spain COVID19 response

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Information relayed by the Comité Español de Representantes de Personas con Discapacidad (CERMI) / The Spanish National Disability Council




Media highlights

Information relayed by the Fundamental Rights Agency (May 2020):

It its annex, Royal Decree-Law 10/2020 of 29 March38 establishes that the following are essential activities (whether public or private):

  • Health professionals. Manufacturers and distributors of supplies of any kind for the health system. Employees who import these products.
  • Workers in retirement homes and other social centres. Persons who care for the elderly, minors, dependent persons or persons with disabilities, but not household employees in general if they do not fulfil these functions, as was shown in drafts filtered during the afternoon.

The Electronic Code COVID-19: Vulnerable Groups, edited by the Official State Bulletin (BOE)52, shows that during the period in reference, both central and regional governments adopted a series of measures aimed at strengthening the protection of people with disabilities against the impacts of the coronavirus crisis.

Meanwhile, there have been complaints from organizations representing groups of people with disabilities53 about certain discriminatory practices which, in their view, result in social exclusion and lack of protection for people with disabilities. The most serious of these complaints relate to health care and the accessibility of information and communication. In this regard, in response to the complaints of CERMI (Spanish Committee of Representatives of Persons with Disabilities)54, the national Bioethics Committee recalled that discrimination on the basis of disability in health care is prohibited in Spain 55 . In turn, the Ombudsman recalled that “it is not acceptable” that scientific societies recommend the sacrifice of persons with disabilities due to lack of means. To all this, the Ministry of Health responded that the Government guarantees health care for those affected by COVID-19 on an equal basis 56 . CERMI also complained to the Ombudsman about the lack of accessibility for deaf and blind persons to Ministry of Education teaching materials broadcast on television during school closures