New data on disability in Canada was released in December 2023 by Statistics Canada. The data shows that the disability rate rose in all provinces and most territories from 2017 to 2022. The disability rate in Canada is now at 27%. Mental health-related, pain-related, and vision disabilities had the largest increases, contributing the most to the rise in the Canadian disability rate.
Women of all ages are more likely than men to have a disability. The disability rate among women is 29.9%, while it is 23.9% among men. The prevalence of disability among youth aged 15 to 24 years is 20.1%, while it is 40.4% among seniors aged 65 years and over.
With growing recognition of disability and an increase in overall numbers, accessibility requires that we move beyond checklists and legislative compliance. We must create a culture of accessibility and inclusion across our communities. The work has begun, but as the latest data shows, there is much more to be done. Disabled people cannot do it alone. It will take participation from all of us to reach our goal. Please join us. Together, we can create a more accessible Canada.
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