First results of the evaluation on the inclusion of disability in the Government’s response to COVID-19 presented in Paraguay
On 26 June, the first results of the rapid evaluation on the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the response of the Government of Paraguay to COVID-19 carried out within the framework of the Bridging the Gap project were presented at a virtual meeting that brought together high-level authorities and civil society leaders.
At the meeting, the quick process undertaken by the National Secretariat for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (SENADIS) through the identification of the situation, calling on civil society for dialogue, active listening and the collection and systematization of citizens’ demands was highlighted as a key factor in the creation of an emergency response methodology.
The protocol on health promotion, prevention and protection for persons with disabilities to address the COVID-19 pandemic launched by the Ministry of Public Health and Social Welfare was revealed as an opportunity to mainstream the disability rights approach into all Government actions: health, social protection, education, State communication, labour, gender violence, children and adolescents, etc., in the executive, judicial and legislative branches.
With regard to the recommendations, this report stresses the need to identify specific actions for the COVID emergency, separating the urgent actions from the important ones, strengthening communication through multilevel training and promoting awareness of the inclusion of persons with disabilities, producing specific guides for individual needs, and carrying out a concrete action in the Ministry of Public Health and Social Welfare of Paraguay to include disability criteria in the collection of the COVID19 information.
This work has been carried out by a technical assistance under the operational direction of the technical cooperation office of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) in Paraguay and with the collaboration of the Paraguayan Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) that are part of the National Commission for the Rights of Persons with disabilities (CONADIS). The definitive data obtained will be included in a final report that will contribute to a more inclusive public policy response to this and other emergencies.