a man in a library in a wheelchair

Facts on Disability in The UK

If disability hasn’t affected your life or any of those around you, you might not realise the impact this can have on people and their families and the way it can change their lives. 

As a business that’s main aim is to make life easier for those with a disability, this is something we see every day and take into consideration as part of our Disability Access Audits.

Here are some stats and facts to make you think. 

  • Around one fifth of Scotland's population, around one million people, define themselves as disabled. Yet disabled people often experience higher levels of inequality compared to their non-disabled peers.

  • Only 50% of disabled people of working age are in work compared to 80% of non-disabled people of working age.

  • The percentage of disabled people experiencing difficulties in accessing goods or services related to their impairment or disability has decreased from 37 per cent in 2005 to 32 per cent in 2008.

  • In Britain over 10 million people have a limiting long term illness, impairment or disability - this is over 18 per cent of the population.

  • The most common types of impairment for adults in Britain are those associated with a difficulty in mobility, lifting and carrying.

  • Disabled children are more likely to have a mental condition like learning or communication difficulties, rather than a physical impairment.

  • The occurrence of disability increases with age - around 1 in 20 children are disabled, compared to around 1 in 7 working age adults and almost 1 in 2 people over state pension age.

  • Disabled people are fifty per cent less likely to hold any formal qualification compared with non disabled people.

  • Disabled people are more likely to be unemployed than non disabled people - in 2008, 48.4 per cent of disabled people were in employment compared with 79.6 per cent of non disabled people.

  • 25 per cent of individuals in families with at least one disabled member live in income poverty, on a before housing cost basis, compared to 16 per cent of individuals in households with no disabled member.

  • Around three in four people believe there is some level of prejudice in Britain towards disabled people.