Watch Your Life Movement
People with disabilities in Zambia attain real equality and full human rights.
“to defend, protect and promote the economic, social, cultural, civil and political rights and fundamental freedoms of persons with disabilities and ensure the respect of their inherent dignity on an equal basis with all other people in Zambia”.
- Human rights
What we need help with
As the virus expands further and wider, and countries are driven to take more and more drastic measures to slow down its spread, a number of human rights institutions and experts have been highlighting issues of concern and proposing possible solutions. “As a leader of Persons with Disabilities, I understand the need for a range of steps to combat COVID-19; I understand the often difficult balancing act when hard decisions need to be taken. "However our efforts to combat this virus won't work unless we approach it holistically, which means taking great care to protect the most vulnerable and neglected people in society, both medically and economically." In addition, a number of independent human rights experts have highlighted specific human rights issues linked both to the pandemic itself and to the measures taken to arrest its spread within and between countries including Zambia. People with disabilities, many of whom fall into the category of those who are especially vulnerable to the virus, also risk being disadvantaged by measures taken to combat Covid-19. "People with disabilities feel they have been left behind," such as social distancing and self-isolation, may be impossible for those who rely on the support of others to eat, dress and bathe." “Restrictions taken to respond to the virus must be motivated by legitimate public health goals and should not be used simply to quash dissent,” they stated in a joint press release. “Human health depends not only on readily accessible health care. It also depends on access to accurate information about the nature of the threats and the means to protect oneself. “The health of every person is linked to the health of the most marginalized members of the community. Preventing the spread of this virus requires outreach to all, and ensuring equitable access to treatment”. This access needs to be available whether they are in an elderly living facility, a prison, or a migrant or refugee camp. “If our response to coronavirus is grounded in the principles of public trust, transparency, respect and empathy for the most vulnerable, we will not only uphold the intrinsic rights of every human being. We will be using and building the most effective tools to ensure we can ride out this crisis and learn lessons for the future.”
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