There are approximately 10 million disabled people in Great Britain covered by the Disability Discrimination Act: about 18 percent of the population. There are over 6.9 million disabled people are of working age which represents 19 percent of the working population. Only 50 percent of disabled people of working age are in employment compared to 81 percent of non-disabled people of working age. 76% of disabled people with a higher education qualification are in employment compared with 90% of non-disabled people. Of those with no qualification, 23% of disabled people are in employment compared with 60% of non-disabled people. Disabled people are almost twice as likely as non-disabled people to have no qualification at all. Disabled people are more than twice as likely as non-disabled people to be out of work and claiming benefits. Of the 2.4 million disabled people on state benefits and not in work nearly a million would like to work. The incidence of disability increases with age. Whilst 9 per cent of adults aged 16-24 are disabled, this increases to about 33 per cent in the 50 to retirement age category. In 2004 40% of the English population are over 45, the age at which the incidence of disability begins to increase.
And here is the rub.
One in every three people either has a disability or has a close relative or friend who is disabled. Office of National Statistics, Census 2001 The estimated annual purchasing power of people with disabilities is £80 billion. Family Resource Survey 2002/2003
That means that the chances are that either you or a friend is disabled, so it's very close to all of us. AND if you have a business then there is around £80billion worth of purchasing that you might be missing out on.
And if they aren't good enough reasons then you have a legal responsibility. So what is holding businesses back from making access better? It seems that many businesses think the work would be too expensive. Others think that it doesn't matter. What do you think?
I believe that you can improve access for most businesses and properties