Some 6.5 million had one or more disabilities in 2017. (Black Press Media File).

Canada home to 6.5 million people with one or more disability

Women are more likely than men to be living with disability

The face of disability in Canada is female, older and poor.

That is the upshot of sociological data as Canada marks the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

According to Statistics Canada, 22 per cent of the Canadian population above the age of 15 – about 6.2 million individuals – had one or more disabilities in 2017, with women more likely to have a disability than men. The figures appear as part of the Canadian Survey on Disability Reports released in November 2018.

The report finds that the prevalence of disability increases with age from 13 per cent for those aged 15 to 24 years to 47 per cent for those aged 75 years and over.

Disability also varies with age. While Disabilities related to pain, flexibility, mobility, and mental health were the most common disability types, mental health-related disabilities prevail among youth aged 15 to 24 years.

RELATED: Sidney session highlights work opportunities for people with physical or mental disabilities

Disability also impacts employment and earnings. The report shows that individuals with disabilities were less likely to be employed (59 per cent) than those without disabilities (80 per cent). Individuals with disabilities, in other words, confront an immediate disadvantage when seeking employment.

Generally, the more severe the disability, the lower the likelihood of employment. Among individuals aged 25 to 64 years, 76 per cent of those with mild disabilities worked, compared to 31 per cent of those with very severe disabilities.

And once they have found employment, socioeconomic status depends on the nature of their disability and their gender.

Persons aged 25 to 64 with more severe disabilities (28 per per cent) were more likely to be living in poverty than their counterparts without disabilities (10 per cent) or with milder disabilities (14 per cent).

A break down shows that lone parents and those living alone were the most likely to be living in poverty among any type of household living arrangements. Since eight in 10 lone parents were women, the high risk of living in poverty in this group disproportionately affected women, the report notes.

The report also suggests that it does not have to be. Among those with disabilities aged 25 to 64 years who were not employed and not currently in school, two in five (39 per cent) had potential to work, but are not. This represents nearly 645,000 individuals with disabilities, who could be part of the workforce, only to see their potential wasted.


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Two big housing projects planned for Castlegar

A mix of single family and multi-family units planned

Women Care Castlegar offers funding to local charities

Women Care Castlegar is a group of community-minded philanthropic women

Castlegar residents living with dementia break silence on stigma

More than half a million Canadians are living with dementia today.

Rossland Council updated on cost of fixing arena

It will cost $700,000+ to get job done

UPDATED: Man dies in backcountry near Whitewater Ski Resort

The victim was found unresponsive in a tree well Friday

VIDEO: Nickelback gears up for nostalgia tour

Canadian band joins Stone Temple Pilots for a summer tour that includes just one stop in Canada

Province asks health-care staff to be ‘vigilant’ in screening for possible coronavirus cases

This comes after U.S. health officials confirmed a case of the virus in Washington State

University of Victoria tells stories of Holocaust survivors with graphic novels

International storytelling initiative launched first meetings this winter

Boy, 13, arrested after alleged assault involving girl at B.C. middle school

Boy alleged to have used ‘inappropriate levels of force’ to injure the girl

B.C. player becomes only second Canadian to enter Hall of Fame of Baseball

Walker received 76.6 percent of the Baseball Writers of America Association vote

PHOTOS: Heavy snowfall breaks window, causing avalanche into B.C. newsroom office

It was a chaotic start to the week for the Kitimat Northern Sentinel

Canadian law firm launches class action on behalf of Iran flight victims

Flight 752 was shot down by Iran shortly after take off

Mission Hill cellarman fired after mistakenly dumping $162K of wine down the drain

The former employee filed a grievance with the West Kelowna winery but was unsuccesful

Most Read