Recovery, Renewal, Resilience

Lessons for Resilience

Consider if social protection programmes are disability-inclusive
Economic strategy

People with disabilities are more likely to be unemployed or not in education or training, which makes them more vulnerable to the impacts of the pandemic, including increased risk of poverty. Recovery strategies to address the economic impacts of the pandemic should be disability-inclusive. Consider:

  • Review/amend social protection systems to better protect people with disabilities during COVID-19:
    • Raise poverty thresholds to take disability-related additional costs into account
    • Revise the definition of disability in assessment procedures, to ensure they are functioning-based rather than impairment-based
    • Train volunteer community members to support the rapid identification of people with disabilities for social protection or other assistance: these community volunteers are sometimes called 'key informants' (KIs), are knowledgeable about the topic, the local area and the people who live there
  • Ensure application procedures for social protection programmes and support services are accessible in the light of COVID-19 social distancing regimes:
    • Include disabled people's organisations when reviewing the accessibility of application processes and when disseminating information about support programmes
    • Adapt application and enrolment procedures to support the inclusion of people with disabilities
    • Provide disability training to programme staff and volunteers, e.g. disability awareness
    • Ensure programme information and application materials are available in a variety of accessible formats, e.g. Braille/videos/simplified text
    • Establish COVID-safe community-based registration services to bring services closer to people, and offer person/home-based assessment procedures for those with mobility limitations
  • Ensure methods to deliver social protection services and welfare payments are accessible:
    • Allow welfare payments to be paid electronically or enable people with mobility difficulties to nominate a trusted individual to collect their
    • Ensure service points are physically accessible and within the person's local community
  • Ensure employment schemes are adequate and accessible for people with disabilities during COVID-19:
    • Set up employment schemes to actively employ persons with disabilities, integrating such schemes into broader employment recovery schemes, e.g. green recovery
    • Make infrastructure accessible, e.g. buildings and workplaces
    • Introduce unemployment insurance to cover the informal sector, as people with disabilities, in particular women with disabilities, are more likely to be employed in the informal sector where there is an absence of job security, unemployment insurance and paid sick leave
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Consider how to reduce information asymmetry in food systems through digital innovation
Supply chain and logistics

Information asymmetry means that one party has more or better information than the other. During COVID-19 information asymmetry has led to food waste and unsustainable farming practices as information about food production is only available to a small number of people in the supply chain. Decentralised information that includes small-scale and flexible production can support more uncertain operating environments such as those needed during COVID-19. Producers and retailers can consider how to increase the flexibility and sustainability of their supply chains by:

  • De-concentrating markets and supply chains by ensuring they are not concentrated in a small number of large companies by using online platforms that create more access for businesses to sell goods and provide producers and consumers more options:
    • In Peru, 80% of merchants at a major market tested positive for COVID-19, but authorities felt closing the market would result in significant food shortages as the supply was concentrated. However in India, by selling through digital platforms, coffee producers were able to keep selling, and obtain significantly higher prices than usual
  • Tracing food throughout the supply chain in a decentralized manner creates opportunities for safer, more sustainable food to protect from zoonotic disease:
    • In Uruguay, foot and mouth transmission was mitigated through de-centralized information sharing where the system would assign an identification code to cattle, letting you know its treatment and location on the production chain in real time
  • Disseminating open data throughout the complex food system to: correct information asymmetries, encourage innovation, and increase efficiency of public spending
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