Disabled teen .
(photo credit: INGIMAGE / ASAP)
Some 38% of people with disabilities between the ages of 25 to 45 were unemployed, compared to 15% among the general population, according to a survey by the Central Bureau of Statistics.
The report on people with disabilities, based on selected data from the 2014 social survey for people aged 20 and above with disabilities, was released on Tuesday ahead of International Day of Persons with Disabilities observed annually on December 3.
According to the findings, 14% of the population aged 20 and above have some form of severe disability, with some 40% among those over the age of 65. Of the disabled, 10% found it very difficult to even walk or climb stairs.
More than half of people with disabilities, some 54%, between the ages of 25 to 45 were employed, compared to 81% among the general population. The report also indicated that 23% of employed people with disabilities earn a minimum of NIS 4,000 per month, compared to 16% among the general population.
While nearly a quarter of people with disabilities, some 22% fear losing their jobs, compared to only 8% among the general population; while 12% fear that if they lose their jobs they will not be able to find another, at least at the same level of pay, this compared to only 5% among the general population.
The study also revealed that there were more disabilities among people with lower educational backgrounds than among those with higher education among all age groups - some 24% without matriculation certificates, 9% with matriculation certificates as their highest level of education and 8% with academic degrees.
The report also found that 19% of people with disabilities aged 20 to 64 often felt lonely while 15% of disabled people in the same age group felt they had nobody to turn to in time of trouble.
Despite these negative findings, the report also examined Israeli attitudes towards people with disabilities and found that the vast majority of Israelis, some 76%, said that they would not oppose a family member marrying a person with a disability.
“Israel seeks to build a society which strives to treat all of its citizens fairly and equitably, people with disabilities need to be included in the workforce at close to the same rate as the rest of the population,” Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday.
According to Ruderman, “The disparity between the employment rate of people with disabilities and those without and the fact that this disparity rate stands at almost thirty percent is a black mark on Israel’s business community.”
“It is well know that people with disabilities contribute to any place of employment as loyal employees and raise the sense of job satisfaction among all employees at the places of employment in which they are included,” he said.
He called on the business community to make an effort to employ people with disabilities.
“If Israel’s business community fails to make a more concerted effort to employ people with disabilities, they are relegating them to a life of loneliness and exclusion from society," he said.