Key Statistics

Black and white close up photo of a 2011 banner, "We're being Shafted" by the government (shafted as braille letters)

Disabled people, those with long-term conditions and their families are already at risk of hardship and face barriers to getting into work and education. Cuts to the support they depend on risk pushing them into poverty, debt and isolation.

Disability Benefits Myth Buster

A lot of myths, untruths and exaggerations are being peddled on the issue of disability benefits, particularly Disability Living Allowance (DLA).

In this document we set the record straight on some of the most regularly used myths for targeting cuts at disabled people’s support, some of which have been most recently given an airing by the Prime Minister himself.

Download the Disability Benefits Myth Buster (Word)


Employment and education

  • Less than half of working age disabled people are in employment compared with more than 75% of non-disabled working age people. (ODI – Disability Equality Indicators)
  • Disabled people are more than twice as likely to hold no qualifications than non disabled people. (ODI – Disability Equality Indicators)
  • Time limiting contributory ESA to one year will affect 700,000 people who have become disabled or acquired a long-term condition. These people have paid their National Insurance/stamps and yet they are only being given twelve months in which to obtain work following a new diagnosis or developing a long-term condition. (DWP, April 2011)
  • If 25,000 disabled people are forced out of work as a result of losing DLA, the loss in National Insurance and Income Tax to the Treasury could be as much as £146.7 million a year. (Disability Rights UK, April 2012)

Crime and Discrimination

  • Disability hate crime is at its highest level since records began and the rate of reported incidents increased by nearly 50% between 2009 and 2011 (Guardian FOI Request, April 2012)
  • Disabled people are significantly more likely to be victims of crime than non-disabled people. 39 per cent of 16-34 year-old disabled people reported having been a victim of crime in 2010/2011 (ODI – Disability Facts & Figures)
  • 56% of disabled people have had someone act in a hostile, aggressive or violent way towards them because of their disability. (Scope Attitudes Survey, 2010)

Data Sources: