Disabled people do not have the opportunity to get to shelters in time during bombings, not least fleeing the country due to mobility impairments, writes Jesper Hansén in Omvärlden. Photo: Aleksey Filippov / UNICEF. Source: Flickr.


Ukraine's 2,7 million disabled people are excluded from humanitarian efforts

The war in Ukraine has left great traces of destruction and has had serious consequences and changed living conditions for the country's civilian population. A particularly vulnerable group are the approximately 2,7 million Ukrainian residents with disabilities.

The mortality rate for people with disabilities is in armed conflicts two to four times higher than for those without disabilities. Disabled people are also ten times more likely to be exposed to violence and sexual abuse than those without disabilities. hrsnon-humanitarian organizations should so far have failed to design inclusive efforts for those with physical or intellectual disabilities in Ukraine, mean MyRight, the Swedish functional rights movement's organization for international development cooperation and development assistance. 

Ukrainian Tanya Hershova is in a wheelchair. NRussia is the first to attack her hometown Kamianske was in her apartment on the fourth floor - which was extra exposed during the bombings, he says she tells Time. None of the shelters in Kamianske were accessible by wheelchair, and Tanya was thus unable to evacuate her home with the rest of the residents in the apartment building.

Jesper Hansén, Secretary General of MyRight, highlights this in the magazine Omvärlden.

- It should be a matter of course for all actors in the humanitarian field to work based on the awareness that there are people with disabilities in Ukraine and among Ukrainian refugees. These are groups that are particularly vulnerable, and which even before the war were often forgotten and invisible, he writes. 

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