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What do we know about disability among Indigenous people?

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What is known about disability in the Indigenous population?

Disability may affect how a person moves around and looks after themselves, how they learn, or how they communicate [1][2]. There are a lot of different kinds of disability:

A disability that is severe and affects how a person is able to live their life is classified as a 'profound/severe core activity restriction' [1].

In 2008, one-half of Indigenous adults had some form of disability [3]. Around one-in-twelve Indigenous adults had a profound/severe core activity restriction.

Disability becomes more common as people get older [4]. In 2008, disability, including profound/severe core restriction, was more common for Indigenous adults than non-Indigenous adults in every age-group (Figure 1), and a higher proportion of Indigenous adults required assistance with a core activity from a younger age. Overall, Indigenous adults were more than twice as likely as non-Indigenous adults to have a profound/severe core restriction [3].

Figure 1. Proportions (%) of Indigenous and non-Indigenous adults with a profound/severe core restriction, by age-group (years), Australia (non-remote areas), 2008

Proportions (%) of Indigenous and non-Indigenous adults with a profound/severe core restriction, by age-group (years), Australia (non-remote areas), 2008

Source: SCRGSP, 2011 [4]

References

  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics (2013) Disability, ageing and carers, Australia: summary of findings, 2012. Canberra: Australian Bureau of Statistics
  2. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2012) Australia's health 2012. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
  3. Australian Bureau of Statistics (2010) The health and welfare of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, Oct 2010. Canberra: Australian Bureau of Statistics
  4. Steering Committee for the Review of Government Service Provision (2011) Overcoming Indigenous disadvantage: key indicators 2011. Canberra: Productivity Commission, Australia
 
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