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Committee to question Women and Equalities Minister Liz Truss

21 April 2020

What action is the Government taking to protect women, men, disabled people, black and minority ethnic people and other groups from disproportionate effects of Covid-19?

This session will consider:

  • The effects of the pandemic and the emergency response to it on different groups of people
  • The role of the Women and Equalities Minister and the Government Equalities Office in protecting disadvantaged groups from disproportionate effects

How prominently have equalities issues featured in the Government's Covid-19 discussions and plans? Will an equality impact assessment will be published?

Issues facing specific groups


  • It has been widely reported that more men die of Covid-19 than women, and the gender difference is very pronounced for people in their 40s and older. The reason for these differences is unknown.


  • make up the majority of the health and care workforce and are thus likely to be at greater risk of exposure;
  • are also more likely to work in service sectors that have been hit hard by social distancing rules, and more likely to be in insecure work and more likely to be dependent on social security;
  • are at greater risk of domestic violence.

Disabled people and elderly people

  • Are facing major changes to social care following changes to the Care Act in recent emergency legislation, which could risk leaving many with inadequate arrangements;
  • Could face discrimination if BMA guidelines for healthcare professionals faced with difficult decisions about who to treat in intensive care have to be used.

Black and minority ethnic people

  • Could be more vulnerable to Covid-19, emerging data suggests.


At 9.30am:

  • The Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP, Minister for Women and Equalities, Government Equalities Office

Further information

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