Five Facts About Disability and Poverty in Canada

Five Facts About Disability and Poverty in Canada

Disability and poverty are mutually reinforcing. Individuals with disabilities face many barriers that can deprive them of access to resources such as education and employment, putting them at higher risk of poverty. Likewise, individuals living in poverty have a higher risk of developing a disability due to factors such as lack of proper nutrition and lack of appropriate healthcare due to high medical costs not covered by OHIP.

13.7 percent of the Canadian population self-identifies as disabled. Here are five startling statistics about this segment of our population:

1. According to the Daily Bread Food Bank’s 2014 Who’s Hungry report, the number of disabled people using food banks in Ontario has doubled since 2005.

2. Canadians with disabilities have a 4.7 % higher poverty rate than the rest of the population.

3. Depending on the type of disability, the chance of poverty can differ drastically:

– No disability–Poverty rate of 9.7%
– Any disability–Poverty rate of 14.4%
– Mobility–Poverty rate of 15.2%
– Agility–Poverty rate of 14.8%
– Pain–Poverty rate of 15.2%
– Communicating–Poverty rate of 24.1%
– Hearing–Poverty rate of 10.3%
– Seeing–Poverty rate of 17.1%
– Any cognitive or psychological disability–Poverty rate of 22.3%

4. Poverty costs Canada`s health care system $7.6 billion per year.

5. More than 1.4 million working-age adults (15 to 64) reported needing help with everyday physical activities in 2006.

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Sources:

– 2006 Participation and Activity Limitation Survey (PALS), Statistics Canada
– Ontario Association of Food Banks

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