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6 Economic and social benefits of employing people with disability

Improving employment outcomes for people with disability will provide significant benefits to workplaces, the economy, the community and individuals themselves.

Employment can provide people with disability with increased income, and with this, higher living standards and financial independence. Employment can contribute to a sense of identity and self-worth and have positive health impacts for some people with disability.[18] Improved employment outcomes for people with disability can also reduce demand on welfare systems.

Businesses who employ people with disability benefit from the diverse range of skills, talents and qualifications that people with disability have to offer. Research has shown that workers with disability have higher rates of retention, better attendance and fewer occupational health and safety incidents than those without a disability.[19]

Share your story

As well as taking evidence through consultations and submissions, the Commission wants to hear successful stories of Australians with disability seeking and retaining employment. In particular, we want to identify what factors contribute to positive outcomes for Australians with disability in employment.


[18] Department of Social Services, Shut Out: The Experience of People with Disabilities and their Families in Australia (2012). At (viewed 27 May 2015).

[19] K Hindle, J Noble, and B Phillips, ‘Are workers with a disability less productive? An empirical challenge to a suspect axiom’ (1999) Paper submitted to the refereed stream of the ANZAM 99 Conference, University of Tasmania), p 5; J Graffam, A Shinkfield, K Smith, and U Polzin, ‘Employer benefits and costs of employing a person with a disability’ (2002) 17 Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, pp 251-263.