Work and people with disabilities

 

Sir, – John FitzGerald tells only part of the story in “Women hold answer to tightening job squeeze” (Business Opinion, August 31st). He argues that “the large number of women who are not in the labour force represents a huge reserve of possible employees”. This may well be true but there is another very large reserve army of labour: people with disabilities of whom 100,000 are claiming disability allowance and do not therefore appear in unemployment statistics. The National Disability Authority has repeatedly drawn attention to the very low employment rates of people with disabilities compared with people without a disability.

In 2016, only 30 per cent of people with disabilities were participating in the Irish labour force compared with 61 per cent of people without a disability. It is Government policy to increase the abysmally low employment rate of men and women with disabilities; so they too should be included in the reserve of possible employees. – Yours, etc,

PAULINE CONROY,

Clonskeagh, Dublin 14.