It is vital that people with disability be a priority as COVID-19 cases increase

We are very concerned to hear about the increasing number of new COVID-19 cases over the last week in Victoria, and other states, and that Stage 3 lockdown has been reimposed to contain the virus.

As in the previous outbreak, it is vital that people with disability are a priority during this period, and our supports and needs are front of mind to all decision makers. People with disability who have NDIS plans are entitled to have their essential supports continue, with appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), access to COVID-19 testing, and alternatives put in place if changes are necessary.

People with disability need accessible COVID-19 testing, including at home, adequate PPE and urgent attention to their increased costs. We are also urging all grocery suppliers to learn the lessons of earlier this year, and make sure that people with disability can continue to get essential supplies.

We are also concerned to hear that children and young people with disability are being asked to return to school, when non-disabled students are being encouraged to learn from home. This is not acceptable, and we are extremely concerned that this approach treats children and young people with disability differently and will put them in greater danger, especially when many are already at high risk of getting COVID-19. Students with disability must be able to access appropriate education supports to ensure they can stay safe and learn from home, along with other non-disabled students.