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

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

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
43 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health

368 cases in the region remain active

A member of the Avalanche Canada South Rockies field team gathers important snowpack data that is used to produce daily avalanche forecasts for the region. Photo by Jennifer Coulter.
Warming temperatures increase avalanche risk heading into the weekend

Warm temperatures impact conditions, human behaviour

Phase four of the Kicking Horse Canyon project will twin the winding stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway just east of Golden. (file photo)
Trans-Canada Highway reduced to one lane east of Golden

It’s the first of the Kicking Horse Canyon Phase 4 closures which will ramp up in the coming weeks

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Interior Health reports 16 new COVID-19 cases

423 cases remain active in the region

Vaccines are expected to become more widely available as the rollout speeds up in B.C. Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing
Sleeves up Golden – vaccine rollout details released

More details about the provincial rollout were released yesterday

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

A protest has been planned for March 5, 2020 over Penticton council’s decision to reject an application from BC Housing to keep an emergency winter shelter open over a year longer than originally planned. (Jesse Day - Western News)
‘Bring your tent’: Protest planned in Penticton’s Gyro Park over winter shelter closure

Protesters plan to show council ‘what the result of their decision will look like’

Although B.C. has not made masks mandatory in public indoor spaces, some business owners are requiring all customers to wear them before entering their store. (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
EDITORIAL: Heightened tension over face masks

Incidents of anger and conflicts over mandated masks happening too frequently

John Hordyk said it isn’t fair to just look at COVID-19 deaths as many survivors are experiencing long-term impacts, himself included. (Photo by Rachel Muise)
Not getting better: Revelstoke man diagnosed with post-COVID-19 syndrome

‘I hope the damage isn’t long term, but it could be permanent’

The City of Vancouver estimates there are 3,500 Canada geese in the city right now, and that number is growing. (Bruce Hogarth)
Help tame Vancouver’s Canada goose population by reporting nests: park officials

The city is asking residents to be on the lookout so staff can remove nests or addle eggs

Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson (Office of the Chief Justice)
Judge questions whether B.C.’s top doctor appreciated right to religious freedom

Lawyer for province says Dr. Henry has outlined the reasons for her orders publicly

Penticton mayor John Vassilaki responded to BC Housing minster David Eby’s remarks that the city has put themselves at risk of creating a tent city Wednesday, March 3, 2020. (Western News file photo)
Penticton mayor calls out BC Housing minister for ‘irresponsible fear-mongering’

Council recently rejected BC Housing’s request to keep a winter shelter open longer than first planned

A sample of guns seized at the Pacific Highway border crossing from the U.S. into B.C. in 2014. Guns smuggled from the U.S. are used in criminal activity, often associated with drug gangs. (Canada Border Service Agency)
B.C. moves to seize vehicles transporting illegal firearms

Bill bans sale of imitation or BB guns to young people

BC Housing minister David Eby is concerned that Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter will result in a “tent city” similar to this one in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / Black Press file)
‘Disappointed and baffled’ B.C. housing minister warns of tent city in Penticton

Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter could create tent city, says David Eby

Most Read