We at Able South Carolina are deeply saddened by the recent statistic that 1 in 100 people over the age of 65 have died from COVID-19, despite being one of the most vaccinated groups.
We know that many over 65 who have died were members of our disability community. Often, their health and wellbeing were considered collateral damage of the pandemic or less valuable than that of non-disabled people.
Since the pandemic began, when sharing the news of a death caused by COVID-19, an offensive question has often followed; “But what did they have?” This question insinuates that to die from such a cruel virus the person infected must have been “lesser” due to a disability and medical condition beyond the complications caused by the virus itself.
We will not tolerate such degrading questions but have an answer when asked, “What did they have?” They had a life. A life worth living. A life that is no lesser than any other because of disability.
As the pandemic continues and the death toll rises, we hope that you will take care not to degrade the deaths of people with disabilities with such questions. Instead, respect our lives by protecting us from the spread of disease with vaccination.
1 in 3 people in South Carolina has a disability and are at the greatest risk of getting very sick or even dying from COVID-19. Respect our lives. Get vaccinated and get your booster shot, because we deserve the right to live.