Unemployment Rate for People with Disabilities

Unemployment rate for people with disabilities is 50 percent higher than able-bodied people. People with disabilities now have more employment opportunities due to SETAs and their training providers. At Action, we use adaptive technology for advanced computer training.

A physical disability is defined as something that affects a “major life activity” of a person, such as caring for self, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing and eating.

Employers are required to provide reasonable modifications to the work environment that enables a disabled person to perform his or her job duties. This includes a wheelchair ramp, adaptive computer technology and accommodations of a guide dog. Employers must also ensure that disabled people have the same rights and privileges as their non-disabled co-workers.

 Tax incentives are available for employers who provide jobs for the disabled. Employers have stated satisfaction with their disabled employees who are more reliable than non-disabled employees while a few said they were equally reliable.

South Africa’s unemployment rate is the highest in the world. This a serious malady that flows into poverty and inequality. Labour economists have tried to understand why our unemployment rate is so high. These questions are difficult to answer definitely because the causes of South Africa’s unemployment are complex and there are many factors shaping the evolution of our labour market and economy.

To understand the South African unemployment rate for people with disabilities problem, we need to address the lessons learnt from our economical past. Under the apartheid rule, state policy was used to remove black citizens from cities and stunted them from being able to get high-status careers.

Over supply of cheap black labour that benefited the owners of businesses such as mining and agriculture was in existence. This is one of the biggest factors of unemployment in South Africa.  

Action for the blind and disabled hopes to change this through training unemployed black people who are disabled. With the right education and resources, we can be the change.


For more information about training that we offer, please contact Elsie Botha on 011 763 3366 or elsie@action4.org.za and Stephen Bergers on 011 763 2429 or stephen@action4.org.za

Americans with Disabilities Act