At its core, COVID-19 deeply impacts the disability community – those who identify as disabled and those who are new to our community due to existing health conditions that place them in high risk categories and/or who acquire disabilities after contracting COVID-19. Although the situation is changing quickly, you still have the right to live, work, and access your community free of discrimination. This means that information should be distributed, and that you have the right to request reasonable accommodations from various agencies.

DRW is here to advocate for our community. We continue to respond to calls and letters from individual’s seeking information about rights and self-advocacy skills through our Technical Assistance (TA) Services.  You can reach us by:

  • Mail at 315 5th Avenue S, Suite 850, Seattle, WA 98104
  • Phone at (206) 324-1521 or (800) 562-2702
    • During our updated hours: 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
    • Language interpreters are available via LanguageLine Solutions. Please use 711 for Washington Relay Service (TTY). Collect calls from correctional facilities are accepted.

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DRW COVID-19 Related Advocacy

DRW’s response to COVID-19 is just beginning.  We are actively addressing and responding to the new issues that emerge each day.  Highlights of our COVID-19 related advocacy follow.

Rooted in Rights Projects

  • 3/10/20 (series beginning) – Blog series covering perspectives from disabled and chronically ill people regarding COVID-19.

Jail and Prison Advocacy (AVID)

  • 3/16/20 – DRW’s AVID Program worked with other legal services organizations, community partners, and family members of incarcerated people to issue letters calling on the Washington State Department of CorrectionsGovernor Inslee, and local jails (Spokane County Jail & King County Jail) to take urgent and bold action to prevent the imminent spread of COVID-19 in our prisons and jails.
  • 3/17/20 – The AVID Program also joined the WACDL/WDA COVID-19 Taskforce to issue a letter to the Washington State Supreme Court, calling for full closure of the courts in light of the risks posed to all participants in the court system, including defendants, attorneys, and court personnel. The Washington Association of Prosecuting Attorneys joined with that Taskforce and submitted an Agreed Proposed Order to the Court, which was subsequently amended and issued by the Court. More information can be found here.

Education Advocacy

  • 3/19/20 – DRW, the Northwest Justice Project, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington sent a letter requesting the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Governor address the sudden loss of essential education services for students with disabilities. More information can be found here.

U.S. Dept of Human & Health Services Office of Civil Rights Complaint

  • 3/23/20 – DRW, SAIL, and The Arc filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights (OCR) about their grave concerns that the plans being put in place discriminate against people with disabilities in violation of federal disability rights laws and place their lives at serious risk. More information can be found here.

COVID-19 Resources

General Information

  • Washington State Department of Health
    • COVID-19 Webpage
    • For more general information: The Washington State Department of Health has established a call center to address questions from the public. If you have questions about what is happening in Washington, or how the virus is spread, please call 1-800-525-0127. Phone lines are currently staffed from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m, seven days a week. Please note that this call center cannot access COVID-19 testing results. For testing inquiries or results, please contact your health care provider.
  • Washington State Government
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Office of the Insurance Commissioner

Information Resources for People with Disabilities

Food and Other Essential Needs

Many people may face extra barriers to getting food and other essential needs during this time, we will continue to update this list as we find more resources or more resources become available.

  • King County
    • A list of some available resources can be found here.
  • Pierce County
    • A list of some available resources can be found here.
  • Thurston County
    • Information about the Thurston County COVID-19 Community Response fund can be found here.
  • Snohomish County
    • A list of some available resources can be found here.
  • Spokane County
    • A list of some available resources can be found here

We will continue to update this list to include more counties throughout Washington. If your county is not listed, you can call 2-1-1 to find out what resources are available in your area.

You can also locate the website for your local United Way, here.