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OFFICE OF DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT POLICY | PERSONS WITH A DISABILITY: LABOR FORCE CHARACTERISTICS — 2018

In 2018, the employment-population ratio—the proportion of the population that is employed—was 19.1 percent among those with a disability, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. In contrast, the employment-population ratio for those without a disability was 65.9 percent. The employment-population ratio for persons with a disability increased from 2017 to 2018, and the ratio for persons without a disability edged up. The unemployment rate for both persons with and without a disability declined from the previous year to 8.0 percent and 3.7 percent, respectively.
The data on persons with a disability are collected as part of the Current Population Survey (CPS), a monthly sample survey of about 60,000 households that provides statistics on employment and unemployment in the United States. The collection of data on persons with a disability is sponsored by the Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy.

Highlights from the 2018 data:
• Nearly half of all persons with a disability were age 65 and older, about three times larger than the share of those with no disability. (See table 1.)
• Across all age groups, the employment-population ratios were much lower for persons with a disability than for those with no disability. (See table 1.)
• Across all educational attainment groups, jobless rates for persons with a disability were higher than those for persons without a disability. See table 1.)
• In 2018, 31 percent of workers with a disability were employed part time, compared with 17 percent for those with no disability. (See table 2.)
• Employed persons with a disability were more likely to be self-employed than those with no disability. (See table 4.)

Demographic characteristics
Persons with a disability tend to be older than persons with no disability, reflecting the increased incidence of disability with age. In 2018, 49 percent of persons with a disability were age 65 and older, compared with 16 percent of those with no disability. Overall, women were somewhat more likely to have a disability than men, partly reflecting the greater life expectancy of women. In 2018, the prevalence of disability continued to be higher for Blacks and Whites than for Hispanics and Asians. (See table 1.)

Employment
The employment-population ratio for persons with a disability increased from 18.7 percent in 2017 to 19.1 percent in 2018. The ratio for those without a disability, at 65.9 percent, edged up in 2018. The lower ratio among persons with a disability reflects, in part, the older age profile of
persons with a disability; older workers are less likely to be employed regardless of disability status. However, across all age groups, persons with a disability were much less likely to be employed than those with no disability. (See tables A and 1.)

Among persons ages 16 to 64, employment-population ratios rose for both persons with a disability (30.4 percent) and persons without a disability (74.0 percent) in 2018. The ratios for persons age 65 and older with a disability (7.4 percent) and without a disability (23.6 percent) were little changed from the previous year. (See table A.)

Persons with a disability are less likely to have completed a bachelor’s degree or higher than those with no disability. Among both groups, those who had attained higher levels of education were more likely to be employed than those who had attained less education. Across all levels of education in 2018, persons with a disability were much less likely to be employed than were their counterparts with no disability. (Educational attainment data are presented for those age 25 and older.) (See table 1.)

Workers with a disability were more likely to be employed part time than those with no disability. In 2018, 31 percent of workers with a disability usually worked part time, compared with 17 percent of those without a disability. The proportion of workers with a disability who worked part time for economic reasons was slightly higher than their counterparts without a disability (4 percent, compared with 3 percent). These individuals were working part time because their hours had been reduced or because they were not able to find a full-time job. (See table 2.)

In 2018, persons with a disability were more concentrated in service occupations than those with no disability (19.0 percent, compared with 17.2 percent). Workers with a disability were also more likely than those with no disability to work in production, transportation, and material moving occupations (13.9 percent, compared with 11.8 percent). Persons with a disability were less likely to work in management, professional, and related occupations than those without a disability (33.7 percent, compared with 40.3 percent). (See table 3.)

The proportion of persons employed in government was slightly higher for persons with a disability than for persons without a disability in 2018 (14.1 percent, compared with 13.4 percent, respectively). A larger share of persons with a disability were self-employed than were those with no disability (10.2 percent, compared with 6.1 percent); a smaller share of workers with a disability were employed as private wage and salary workers (75.5 percent) than those with no disability (80.4 percent). (See table 4.)

Unemployment
The unemployment rate for persons with a disability was 8.0 percent in 2018, more than twice the rate of those with no disability (3.7 percent). (Unemployed persons are those who did not have a job, were available for work, and were actively looking for a job in the 4 weeks preceding the survey.) The unemployment rates for both persons with and without a disability were lower in 2018 than in the prior year. (See tables A and 1.)

In 2018, the unemployment rate for men with a disability (7.9 percent) was about the same as the rate for women (8.1 percent). The unemployment rates for both men and women declined from 2017 to 2018. Jobless rates declined among Whites and Blacks with a disability in 2018, while the rates for Hispanics and Asians showed little change. For persons with a disability, Blacks (11.2 percent) and Hispanics (9.8 percent) had higher unemployment rates than Whites (7.3 percent), and Asians (7.1 percent) in 2018. (See table 1.)

Not in the labor force
Persons who are neither employed nor unemployed are not in the labor force. A large proportion of persons with a disability—about 8 in 10—were not in the labor force in 2018, compared with about 3 in 10 of those with no disability. In part, this reflects the older age profile of persons with
a disability; persons age 65 and older are much less likely to participate in the labor force than younger age groups. Across all age groups, however, persons with a disability were more likely to be out of the labor force than those with no disability. (See table 1.)

For persons with and without a disability, the vast majority of those not in the labor force reported that they do not want a job. In 2018, 3 percent of those with a disability and 6 percent of those without a disability wanted a job. Among those who do want a job, a subset is classified as marginally attached to the labor force. These individuals wanted and were available to work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. (Persons marginally attached to the labor force include discouraged workers.) About 1 percent of persons with a disability and 2 percent of persons without a disability were marginally attached to the labor force in 2018. (See table 5.)

To view the complete report, including tables, click here.

By | 3. Mar 2019 | Recent News | Comments Off on OFFICE OF DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT POLICY | PERSONS WITH A DISABILITY: LABOR FORCE CHARACTERISTICS — 2018

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