August 2020

The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has created an unprecedented crisis for governments, health systems and societies at large, and has severely impacted the health, lives and livelihood of millions of people worldwide.

Marginalised groups are among people the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, and yet are among the least protected from it by governmental actions to date. Indeed, the COVID-19 crisis has brought into sharp focus the stark inequities that exist in access to health and social support services for marginalised people who live precariously in Europe, often outside formal healthcare systems and social, labour and legal protection measures.

The Nobody Left Outside coalition has developed this briefing paper for the WHO European Office for Investment for Health and Development to:

  1. Explain to policymakers the particular challenges and impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and government responses among marginalised groups in Europe. This is done via a unique exercise mapping the inter-related impacts associated with homelessness, sex work, undocumented status, drug use, LGBTI identity and imprisonment according to the framework of the WHO Health Equity Status Report (HESR) essential conditions for a health life
  2. Recommend solutions to help improve government responses, recovery measures and inform preparedness plans
  3. Present the voices and actions of marginalised communities and civil society organisations currently working on the frontlines to support them through the pandemic and beyond. This section signposts to a variety of resources highlighting lived experiences and ongoing community-led responses across Europe