National Trends in Disability Employment (nTIDE) – published bi-monthly by the Kessler Foundation and the University of New Hampshire
East Hanover, NJ – July 2, 2021 – Sharp rise in employment signals economic recovery for people with and without disabilities, according to today’s National Trends in Disability Employment – Monthly Update (nTIDE), published by the Kessler Foundation and the University of New Hampshires Institute on Disability (UNH-IOD). Key indicators are approaching pre-pandemic levels as people with disabilities strengthen their position in the labor market.
nTIDE COVID update (monthly comparison)
In the job report published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on Friday, the employment rate for people with disabilities of working age rose from 30.4 percent in May to 31.5 percent in June 2021 (up 3.6 percent or 1.1 percentage points ). The employment rate for people of working age without disabilities also rose from 72.2 percent in May to 72.6 percent in June 2021 (plus 0.6 percent or 0.4 percentage points). Employment, a key indicator, reflects the share of the workforce in the total population (the number of people in employment divided by the number of people in the total population multiplied by 100).
“These numbers are very close to pre-pandemic levels. In March 2020, the employment rate was 31.7 percent. Today we’re just 0.2 percentage points away from that, ”said economist Andrew Houtenville, PhD, research director for the Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire. “Hopefully this level of employment will be maintained or even better surpassed for the months and years to come,” he added.
The labor force participation of people with disabilities of working age rose from 34.2 percent in May to 35.4 percent in June 2021 (plus 3.5 percent or 1.2 percentage points). For people of working age without disabilities, the participation rate rose from 76.3 percent in May to 77.2 percent in June 2021 (plus 1.2 percent or 0.9 percentage points). The participation rate is the percentage of the population who are employed, who are not working and are temporarily laid off, or who are not working and who are actively looking for work.
“The labor force participation of people with disabilities is higher today than it was before the pandemic. This was a ray of hope during the Covid-19 pandemic as people with disabilities continue to be in the labor market, perhaps for economic reasons, ”said John O’Neill, PhD, director of the Center for Employment and Disability Research at Kessler Foundation . “The last time we saw labor force participation at this level was in July 2009,” he said.
nTIDE numbers from year to year (compared to the same time last year)
The employment rate of people with disabilities of working age rose from 28.4 percent in June 2020 to 31.5 percent in June 2021 (plus 10.9 percent or 3.1 percentage points). Even among people without disabilities of working age, the employment rate rose from 67.7 percent in June 2020 to 72.6 percent in June 2021 (plus 7.2 percent or 4.9 percentage points).
The participation rate of people with disabilities of working age rose from 34.4 percent in June 2020 to 35.4 percent in June 2021 (plus 2.9 percent or 1 percentage point). For people of working age without disabilities, the participation rate rose from 76.2 percent in June 2020 to 77.2 percent in June 2021 (plus 1.3 percent or 1 percentage point).
As of June 2021, the 5,046,000 disabled workers among workers ages 16 to 64 made up 3.5 percent of the total of 142,462,000 workers in the United States
Ask questions about disability and employment
Every nTIDE publication is followed by a live webinar #nTIDE Lunch & Learn at 12:00 noon Eastern Time. hosted via zoom. with questions and answers about the latest nTIDE results, news and updates from practice, as well as invited panelists to discuss current findings and events related to disabilities. On July 2, Clark Rachfal, director of advocacy and governmental affairs at the American Council for the Blind, will join Dr. Houtenville and Denise Rozell, political strategist at AUCD. Be there live or watch the recordings: ResearchonDisability.org/nTIDE.
nTIDE COVID Update – Friday July 23 at 12:00 p.m. Eastern
Stay tuned for our update on Employment of People with Disabilities, updated mid-month, as we track the impact of COVID-19 and take a closer look at the numbers.
NOTE: Statistics in nTIDE are based on Bureau of Labor Statistics figures but are not identical. They are adjusted by UNH to combine the statistics for men and women of working age (16 to 64 years old). nTIDE is funded in part by grants from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) (90RT5037) and the Kessler Foundation.
About the Kessler Foundation
The Kessler Foundation, a major nonprofit in the disability field, is a global leader in rehabilitation research with the goal of increasing cognition, mobility and long-term outcomes – including employment – for people with neurological disabilities caused by diseases and brain injuries caused to improve and spinal cord. The Kessler Foundation is a nationwide leader in funding innovative programs that expand employment opportunities for people with disabilities. More information is available at KesslerFoundation.org.
Via the Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire
The Institute on Disability (IOD) at the University of New Hampshire (UNH) was founded in 1987 to create a coherent university focus on improving knowledge, policies and practices related to the lives of people with disabilities and their families. For more information on the NIDILRR-funded Research and Training Center on Employment Policy and Measurement of Rehabilitation, please visit ResearchOnDisability.org.
For more information or to interview an expert, contact:
Carolann Murphy, 973.324.8382, [email protected]
Title: Month-to-month nTIDE employment figures for people with and without disabilities
Caption: This graph compares the economic indicators for May 2021 and June 2021 and shows strong increases for people with and without disabilities.
Title: nTIDE Annual Comparison of Economic Indicators for People with and Without Disabilities Dis
Caption: This graph compares the economic indicators for June 2020 and June 2021 and shows slight increases for people with and without disabilities. The labor force participation rate increased for people without disabilities, but remained unchanged for people with and without disabilities, signaling the beginning of an economic recovery.