Equitable and inclusive emergency planning and responses

VCOSS submission to Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability – Emergency Planning and Response Issues Paper

In recent (and current) crises, such as the 2019/20 summer bushfires and COVID-19, people with disability have not been accorded priority during disaster management activities and in emergency responses. During the COVID-19 pandemic in particular, people with disability, their families, carers and support network have been feeling ignored and excluded.

Early and ongoing engagement with people with disability is crucial in ensuring ongoing and future emergency responses are timely, tailored and considered. By adopting proactive approaches and including people with disability in emergency planning, a range of barriers and issues can be prevented and addressed. There is significant scope for access to crisis support, essential supplies, financial assistance and specialised services to be strengthened through better engagement with people with disability, their families and carers, before, during and after times of crisis.

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Date published:
Fri 14th Aug, 2020