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10 facts about Disability in honour of Disability History Month

Disability History Month runs from

22nd Nov – 22nd Dec every year.

We’ve pulled together 10 interesting facts about Disability to honour this month.

1. Only about 9 percent of disabilities are caused by accidents.  Most people think the only way they will be unable to work is if they get in a bad car accident and break their back.  Or break their spine skiing.  Or get hit by lightning, or half-eaten by a shark.  Even though accidents make news headlines, the reality is, bad accidents don’t happen as often as you might think.   Which means…

2. About 91 percent of disabilities are caused by illnesses.  How boring is that?  You won’t have a cool story to tell about how you got disabled.  It will be a lame story that is slow to progress and sad and depressing.   Sports talk show host Dan Patrick previously revealed on his show his seven-year ongoing battle with polymyalgia rheumatica, an auto-immune disorder that causes intense joint pain.  He needed to take Vicodin to play a round of golf.  The treatment he went through has side effects of headaches, memory loss, and brain fog.  It’s tough to be a radio show host when your brain isn’t operating at full speed.  It’s been a challenge for him to sit in a chair and talk every day.  If you do anything more than sitting and talking for a living, this disease could prevent you from doing your job successfully.   

3. Musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders and diseases are the number one cause of disability.  Diseases of the nervous system and sensory organs are the number two cause.  That means muscle, back, and joint pain.  Arthritis, herniated discs, back/spine/joint pain, tendonitis, osteoporosis, rheumatism, scoliosis, sciatica.  MS, ALS, Parkinson’s, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, eyesight and hearing disorders, among others.  Click this link for a chart listing the most common causes of disabilities.

4. India has the largest population of people with a visual impairment.

5. On average, a disabled person will spend £570 more a month to maintain their life in the UK.

6. Examples of disability activism can be traced back to the 1800’s.

7. For every child killed in warfare, 3 are left injured with permanent disabilities.

8. An estimated 386 million of the world’s working-age people have some form of disability, says the International Labour Organization (ILO). Unemployment among the persons with disabilities is as high as 80 per cent in some countries. Often employers assume that persons with disabilities are unable to work.

9. In 1964, Passage of the Civil Rights Act became the inspiration for future disabilities rights legislation.

10. There are 14.6 million disabled people in Britain.


The Finity Group

We Are Capable

National Park Service

The UN

Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit

A fascinating article about the history of disability:

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Shaun McGarry
Shaun McGarry
Dec 07, 2022

What about inherited disabilities?

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