According to a recent report released by JDC-Israel for International Day of
Persons with Disabilities, which took place on Monday, more than a million
adults in the country live with disabilities – 12,000 of whom live in
institutions or with assisted living systems.
The organization’s figures
showed that 19 percent of Israel’s adult population suffers from moderate to
severe disabilities, while 6% have mild disabilities.
growth rate of people with disabilities in Israel is about three times that of
the rest of the population.
More than 260,000 of Israel’s disabled are
entitled to social security benefits, a number that is rapidly growing,
according to the report.
About another 50,000 people receive a disability
pension from the IDF, and 200,000 receive support and benefits from other
In terms of employment, about 40% of the young unemployed in
Israel are disabled.
Only 52% of people with disabilities in Israel have
a job, compared to 74% for the general population.
The average salary
among people with disabilities is about NIS 6,300, compared to others who earn
on average about NIS 2,000 more.
Disabled people are three times more
likely to develop chronic diseases than the rest of the population. They are
also twice more likely to be victims of violence.
Jay Ruderman, the
president of the Ruderman Family Foundation, which focuses on inclusion of the
disabled, addressed the issue on Monday, saying, “While it’s important to have a
day that focuses on people with disabilities, true inclusion of this largest
majority population in Israel is only going to happen if we focus on this issue
on a daily basis,” he said.
Avital Sandler-Loeff, head of the Israel
Unlimited program that aims to develop services for the social integration of
the disabled, addressed the need for their inclusion in community life,
beginning with housing.
“Most of the resources invested today are
institutional solutions, but there is a need to produce systems of independent
housing in the community,” she said.
“There needs to be a new generation
of services for people with disabilities who want to be involved in society and
contribute to it,” she continued.
“It is important that people with
disabilities know that there are systems that can help them, such as supportive
communities which work to advance their independence,” Sandler-Loeff
“Alongside with the existing aid, it’s important to continue
expanding it and reach as many people as possible,” she concluded.