William Eichler 15 January 2019

Disability employment gap ‘narrows’

Disabled people have accounted for about a third of the increase in employment in the UK over the last decade, think tank finds.

According to a new report from Resolution Foundation, the disability employment rate has risen by 6.1%, compared to a rise of 2.8% for those without disabilities.

The Government has said that it is committed to halving the disability employment gap, i.e. the difference between the rates of employed non-disabled people and employed disabled people. The gap was 32% in 2016 and the target is to hit 16% in 2020.

Disability Rights UK welcomed the Resolution Foundation’s findings, but — quoting the All Party Parliamentary Group on Disability report Ahead of the Arc — noted that 1,074,000 disabled people would have to be moved into employment to reach the 16% target.

Ahead of the Arc suggests it could take almost 50 years to narrow the gap to its target of 16 percentage points.

The Resolution Foundation report suggests that the 50-year timescale may reduce slightly but also notes that there has been a significant rise in the proportion of people reporting that they have a disability, and a rise in the proportion of people reporting mental health problems.

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