Disability Statics

By the Numbers: Disability in Australia

Awareness is the first step towards change; understand the disability landscape in Australia through real stats. Journey with us and be part of a more inclusive future.

  • 1 in 5 Australians have a disability.
  • By 2099, around five million Australians will have a severe or profound disability.
  • Over a third of households in Australia have a member with a disability.
  • Defined as any limitation or impairment restricting everyday activities for at least 6 months.
  • Types include physical, intellectual, mental illness, and sensory.
  • About half use aids or equipment.
  • 62.1% report their needs are fully met, while 2.7% say their needs are unmet.
  • Incidences include spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, cerebral palsy, Down Syndrome, autism, intellectual disabilities, and hearing loss.
  • They face an unemployment rate of 10%.
  • Only 27% work full-time.
  • Australia is 21st out of 29 OECD countries in labour force participation for disabled people.
  • 41% have completed Year 12, and 17% have a Bachelor’s Degree or higher.
  • They are more likely to have a Certificate level qualification than non-disabled counterparts.
  • They are 2.7 times more likely to be at risk of poverty in Australia.
  • 45% live near or below the poverty line.
  • Almost 10% have experienced discrimination.
  • Many avoid situations due to their disability, especially among younger individuals.
  • The average primary carer’s age is 55.
  • 11.6% of Australians are carers, with a significant portion being females and many having disabilities themselves.
  • 7.3% of Australian children have a disability.
  • Boys have higher rates, and most attend mainstream schools, though resources are often lacking.
  • 1 in 5 Australians have a mental illness.
  • Depression, anxiety, and substance use disorder are the most common.
  • Suicide rates are notably high among those with a mental illness.

What You Need to Know

Understanding Disability in Our Community

Every individual with a disability possesses a unique story shaped by personal experiences, aspirations, and dreams. Disability might be physical, cognitive, sensory, or psychiatric, but it’s essential to remember that it’s just one facet of a person. In the Greater Sydney Region, we celebrate this diversity, acknowledging the depth and richness it brings to our community tapestry.
This guide helps you use respectful words when talking about disabilities, promoting understanding and respect.
Different kinds of disabilities include physical, intellectual, sensory, and more, each with unique challenges.
We focus on your needs, preferences, and goals to create personalised support that suits you best.
These are numbers that show how many people have disabilities and help us understand their experiences and needs.
These are rules that ensure disability services are safe, high-quality, and accountable to provide the best care.