Kymberly Martin
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Good and bad news for people with disability

There were 4.4 million Australians with disability or 17.7 per cent of the population in 2018, down from 18.3 per cent in 2015, according to the latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

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The prevalence of disability increases with age with 11.6 per cent aged 0-64 years and 49.6 per cent aged 65 years and over with a disability. Prevalence was similar for males and females, while 5.7 per cent had a profound or severe disability. Also 23.2 per cent with disability reported a mental or behavioural disorder as their main condition, up from 21.5 per cent in 2015.

There were slight increases in those aged 15 years and over completing year 12 or equivalent and in those receiving a Bachelor degree or above while labour force participation has remained stable. However there was some encouraging data on the work force with 11.4 per cent of those with a profound or severe disability, aged 15-64 years working full-time, up from 7.9 per cent in 2015.

Those receiving a government pension or allowance, or having their need for assistance fully met, both declined slightly while those aged 15 years and over who had experienced discrimination in the previous 12 months because of their disability, rose slightly.

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