15% of the world identifies as having a disability

According to the World Health Organization, 15% of the world’s population (an estimated 1.1 billion people) identify as having some form of disability. This represents the world’s largest minority, and the only minority group that any of us can become a member of at any time.

More than 6.2 million Canadians live with some form of disability

More than 6.2 million Canadians—almost 22% of the population in this country—aged 15 years and over are living with some form of disability that affects their level of freedom, independence or quality of life. This number does not include figures for prevalence of disabilities among children and youth under 15 years old which means that the number of Canadians who are living with disabilities is even higher (Statistics Canada, 2017).

More than 4 in 10 Canadians with disabilities have a severe or very severe disability

57% of Canadians with disability law canada have a ‘mild or moderate’ disability and 43% have a ‘more severe’ disability (classified as having a severe or very severe disability). In all cases, the disability rights law was severe enough to limit them to some extent in their daily activities (Statistics Canada, 2017).

Disability isn’t always obvious

The 10 disability types identified by the in the Canadian Survey on Disability study are: seeing, hearing, mobility, flexibility, dexterity, pain-related, learning, developmental, mental-health related, and memory. Many disabilities are not visible. These so-called “hidden disabilities” still affect a large swath of Canadians. For example, the Learning Disability Association of Canada estimates that one in 10 Canadians has a learning disability.

Living with disability is expensive

According to the 2017 Canadian Survey on Disability, 1.6 million Canadians with disabilities were unable to afford the aids, devices or prescription medication they require due to cost.

A specially designed walker can cost up to $2,500. A customized power wheelchair can cost more than $25,000. A porch lift can cost upwards of $5,000.  Modifications and renovations to make a home accessible can cost tens of thousands of dollars. These costs can be prohibitive or even unattainable for many individuals and families in lower income households.

There’s a real wage gap

Working aged adults without a disability make a higher median after-tax personal income ($39,000) than those with milder disabilities ($34,300) and those with more severe disability rights law ($19,200). (Statistics Canada, 2017).

More people with disabilities are underemployed

Approximately 59% of working-age adults with disabilities are employed compared with around 80% of those without disabilities. As severity of employment disability law, the percentage of those employed falls from 76% among those with mild disabilities to 31% among those with very severe disabilities (Statistics Canada, 2017).

Employers report being happy with hiring those with disabilities

Despite the lack of opportunity for candidates with disabilities disability rights law, more than three-quarters of the employers surveyed by BMO in 2013 said that after recruiting disabled workers, the hires either met their expectations (62%) or exceeded them (15%).

Students with disabilities are eligible for special loans

The National Educational Association of Disabled Students has a website that lists information about awards and scholarships specifically for students with disabilities. The site is designed to make it easier for disabled students to search for relevant bursaries.