Keeping safe and well during the pandemic

We've created some guides to help you keep safe and well during the coronavirus outbreak. The guides are accessible for people with a learning disability to use and are easy read format.

Take a look at the headings below and see the links to relevant guides underneath.

Self-isolating

About self-isolating if you live on your own (PDF) 

About self-isolating if you live with other people (PDF)

Social distancing

About social distancing if you live with other people (PDF)

A guide to the 2 metre and 1 metre plus social distancing rules (PDF)

The government have created these signs that can be used to show the carrier may have difficulties or concerns in maintaining social distancing.

Shielding

Guidance on protecting people most likely to get very poorly from coronavirus (shielding) (PDF) (updated following new guidance from the government on 22 June)

Local lockdowns

Some places in the UK have more coronavirus cases than other parts of the country.

To help keep people safe in these areas some rules may be put in place which may affect you if you live there, especially if you are someone who is most likely to get very poorly from coronavirus. If you are one of these people you will be on the shielded patients list.

The following areas have higher cases of coronavirus in the UK and are taking advanced measures. Click on each location to visit the Gov.uk website and find out more about what is happening there:

Everyone on the shielded patients list who lives in one of these areas will receive a text and a letter to tell them that advanced measures are being taken in their local area, what the instructions are for them, and where they can find more information and support.

Find out more about shielding guidance for the rest of the country in our PDF easy read guide here.

You can find out what is happening in your local area by using our local support map.

Face coverings

This PDF easy read guide explains what face coverings are, including why and how they should be worn.

There are different rules for wearing face coverings depending on where you are. 

We have created this PDF easy read guide on face coverings rules for people living in England. (Please see separate guidance for people in Northern Ireland (PDF) and Wales.)

People who do not have to wear a face covering

This guidance explains why some people do not have to wear face coverings.(For example; because you have a disability that means you cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering, or because it causes severe distress).

If you do not have to wear a face covering, there are cards (sometimes called "exemption cards") that you can take with you when you go out to help explain why, if someone asks you in public. The cards can also be used to ask someone else to remove their face mask or covering so you can understand them better.

Please use these cards if you need them:

Keeping safe

Top tips to keeping safe from coronavirus (PDF)

Public transport

Ways to help you travel safely on public transport (PDF)

Going to work or working from home

How to work safely during the coronavirus pandemic (PDF)

How to make online meetings accessible (PDF)

Traffic light cards to help you communicate in meetings (PDF)

Test and trace

About the NHS Test and Trace application (PDF)

What to do if you are contacted by NHS Test and Trace (PDF)

The NHS have also created easy read posters like this (PDF) so people know when and how to get a test for coronavirus.

Food shopping

We've created some letters for you or your support worker to use to contact your local supermarket and find out when their priority shopping hours are, and if they can provide support with your shopping:

Help with shopping letter from a person with a learning disability (PDF)

Help with shopping letter from a support worker (PDF)

List of supermarket details

You can check for the latest information and find contact details for the major UK supermarkets on their websites.  

Aldi: www.aldi.co.uk

Asda: www.asda.com

Best-One: www.best-one.co.uk

Budgens: www.budgens.co.uk

Co-Op: www.coop.co.uk  

Costco: www.costco.co.uk

Costcutter: www.costcutter.co.uk

Farmfoods: www.farmfoods.co.uk 

Iceland: www.iceland.co.uk

Lidl: www.lidl.co.uk

Londis: www.londis.co.uk

Makro: www.makro.co.uk

Marks and Spencer: www.marksandspencer.com

Morrisons: groceries.morrisons.com  

Nisa: www.nisalocally.co.uk

Ocado: accounts.ocado.com

Premier: www.premier-stores.co.uk

Sainsbury’s: www.sainsburys.co.uk

To try and prioritise vulnerable customers for home delivery, Sainsburys has a vulnerable persons careline: 0800 052 5500. (There may be long call wait times.)  

Spar: www.spar.co.uk 

Tesco: www.tesco.com

Waitrose: www.waitrose.com

Befriending

We know that people with a learning disability already experience high levels of loneliness and social isolation and that this will only have been made worse by coronavirus and lockdown.

Befriending can help. 

So please get in touch with us to:

  • see what befriending options are available in your area
  • find out more about befriending volunteer opportunities
  • tell us about your befriending scheme if you already have one set up.

Email us at friendships@mencap.org.uk and tell us who you are (e.g. an individual, family member or carer, or an organisation or professional), where you live and what you are interested in (e.g. support, being a befriending volunteer).

Scams

How to avoid scams and keep your money safe (PDF)

Caring for a person with a learning disability

We've created answers to some frequently asked questions around coronavirus for people who care for a person with a learning disability (including support workers and family carers).

Keeping clean and handwashing

How to stop coronavirus spreading by keeping clean (PDF)

How to wash your hands (PDF)

About coronavirus

About coronavirus (COVID-19) (PDF)

What will happen if I get coronavirus (COVID-19)? (PDF)

What to expect from coronavirus (COVID-19) if you live with other people (PDF)

What to expect from coronavirus (COVID-19) if you live on your own (PDF)

Government guidance

Latest government guidance

What you can and cannot do in England (PDF)

Images of someone washing their hands

How to wash your hands thoroughly

Follow these steps when you wash your hands:

  1. Wet your hands under warm running water
  2. Apply a small amount of soap
  3. Rub your hands together and make sure that the soap and water cover all over your hands
  4. Carefully wash your palms, the backs of your hands, your fingertips, thumbs, your wrists and nails
  5. Rinse your hands under running water
  6. Dry your hands thoroughly.
PDF easy read guide to handwashing

Talk to us

We know this is a difficult and unusual time. We're here to help.

If you need information or advice you can contact our helpline or if you can, have a chat on our online community

Contact the helpline Go to the online community