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Release Number CB15-FF.10
Component ID: #ti76107297

May 28, 2015 — On July 26, 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed into law the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in employment, transportation, public accommodations, commercial facilities, telecommunications, and state and local government services.

To commemorate the 25th anniversary of this law’s enactment, this edition of the Facts for Features provides a demographic snapshot of the U.S. population with a disability and examines various services available to them. The statistics come from various Census Bureau censuses and surveys, covering differing periods of time.

Graphic [PDF <1.0]

Component ID: #ti124665392

Population Distribution

56.7 million

Number of people in the United States in 2010 with a disability, according to the Survey of Income and Program Participation. People with disabilities represented 19 percent of the civilian noninstitutionalized population. People with a disability have a physical or mental impairment that affects one or more major life activities, such as walking, bathing, dressing, eating, preparing meals, going outside the home or doing housework. A disability can occur at birth or at any point in a person’s life.
Source: Americans with Disabilities: 2010 <http://www.census.gov/prod/2012pubs/p70-131.pdf>

15.7 million

According to data collected from the American Community Survey from 2008 to 2012, the number of people 65 and older — 39 percent of the population in this age group — with at least one disability. Of this group, two-thirds had difficulty in walking or climbing. The second-most cited disability was difficulty with independent living, such as visiting a doctor’s office or shopping.
Source: Older Americans With a Disability: 2008-2012

20.2%

Percent of the civilian noninstitutionalized population in West Virginia in 2013 with a disability — the highest rate of any state in the nation. Utah, at 9.5 percent, had the lowest rate.
Source: 2013 American Community Survey, Table GCT1810
<http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=ACS_13_1YR_GCT1810.US01PR&prodType=table>

31.7%

Percent of the civilian noninstitutionalized population in Pike County, Ky., in 2013 with a disability — the highest rate in the nation among counties with populations of 65,000 or more (although not statistically different from the rate for Walker County, Ala., which was 29.4 percent). Loudoun County, Va., at 5.5 percent, had among the lowest rates.
Source: 2013 American Community Survey, Table GCT1810
<http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=ACS_13_1YR_GCT1810.US05PR&prodType=table>

22.4%

Percent of the civilian noninstitutionalized population in Merced, Calif., in 2013 with a disability — among the highest rates in the nation among places with populations of 65,000 or more. Johns Creek, Ga., at 4.0 percent, had among the lowest rates. A place is a city, town, village or borough, either legally incorporated or not. (The rate for Merced is not statistically different from that for West Virginia.)
Source: 2013 American Community Survey, Table GCT1810
<http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=ACS_13_1YR_GCT1810.US13PR&prodType=table>

Component ID: #ti124665391

Services for those with Disabilities

2,794

The number of business establishments providing special needs transportation in 2012, up 19 percent from 2,347 in 2007. Such businesses may use specially equipped vehicles to provide passenger transportation. These businesses employed 62,221 people in 2012 and generated revenues of $3.6 billion. Employment was up 25.3 percent and revenues increased 31.5 percent since 2007.
Source: 2012 and 2007 Economic Census Industry Series (NAICS 485991)
<http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ECN/2012_US/48I2//naics~485991>

14,042

The number of business establishments that provided pet care (except veterinary services) in 2012. These businesses generated revenues of $3.5 billion. Among these businesses are those that train assistance dogs.
Source: 2012 Economic Census Industry Series (NAICS 812910)
<http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ECN/2012_US/81I2//naics~812910>

25,899

Number of business establishments providing services for the elderly and people with disabilities in 2012. These businesses employed 911,331 workers and generated $34.4 billion in revenues. In 2007, there were 20,433 such establishments, employing 621,545 and producing $25.3 billion in revenues. These establishments provide for the welfare of these individuals in such areas as day care, nonmedical home care or homemaker services, social activities, group support and companionship.
Source: 2012 and 2007 Economic Census Industry Series (NAICS 624120)
<http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ECN/2012_US/62I2//naics~624120>

7,834

Business establishments providing vocational rehabilitation services in 2012; these businesses employed 311,798 people and generated revenues of $12.5 billion. In 2007, there were 7,631 such establishments, employing 303,713 people and producing revenues of $11.5 billion. These businesses provide job counseling, job training and work experience to people with disabilities.
Source: 2012 and 2007 Economic Census Industry Series (NAICS 624310)
<http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ECN/2012_US/62I2//naics~624310>

2,338

Business establishments providing translation and interpretation services in 2012; these businesses employed 20,248 people and generated revenues of $3.9 billion. In 2007, there were 1,975 such establishments, employing 14,546 people and producing revenues of $1.9 billion. Among these businesses are those that provide sign language services.
Source: 2012 Economic Census Industry Series (NAICS 541930)
<http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ECN/2012_US/54I2//naics~541930>

3,594

The number of business establishments providing home health equipment rental in 2012, down  4.5 percent from 3,762 in 2007. Such businesses rent home-type health and invalid equipment, such as wheelchairs, hospital beds, oxygen tanks, etc. These businesses employed 33,899 people in 2012 and generated revenues of $5.4 billion. Employment was up 2.7 percent while revenues decreased 8.0 percent since 2007.
Source: 2012 and 2007 Economic Census Industry Series (NAICS 532291)
<http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ECN/2012_US/53I2//naics~532291>

Component ID: #ti124665390

Specific Disabilities

Note: All the data in this section come from Americans with Disabilities: 2010, which contains data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation.

  • 7.6 million: Number of people 15 and older in 2010 who had a hearing impairment. Among people 65 and older, 4 million had hearing impairments.
  • 8.1 million: Number of people 15 and older in 2010 with a vision impairment.
  • 30.6 million: Number of people 15 and older in 2010 who had movement impairment, such as walking or climbing stairs.
  • 3.6 million: Number of people 15 and older in 2010 who used a wheelchair. This compares with 11.6 million people who used canes, crutches or walkers.
  • 2.4 million: Number of people 15 and older in 2010 who had Alzheimer’s disease, senility or any form of neurocognitive disorders.
  • 12.0 million: Number of people 15 and older in 2010 who required the assistance of others in order to perform one or more basic or instrumental activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing, doing housework and preparing meals.

Component ID: #ti124665389

Older People with a Disability

Note: The source for the data in this section is Older Americans With a Disability: 2008-2012, a report which uses data collected form 2008 to 2012 during the American Community Survey.

25.4%

Among the population 65 and older with a disability, the percentage who were age 85 and older, according to the 2008-2012 American Community Survey.

More than One-Third

The proportion of people 85 and older with a disability who lived alone, compared with one-fourth of those age 65 to 74, according to the 2008-2012 American Community Survey.

54.4%

Percentage of the older population who had not graduated from high school and had a disability, twice the rate of those with a bachelor’s degree or higher (26.0 percent), according to the 2008-2012 American Community Survey.

12.6%

Percentage of the older Americans living in a household with a disability living in poverty, compared with 7.2 percent of older household population without a disability, according to the 2008-2012 American Community Survey.

Component ID: #ti124665388

Earnings

$20,885

Median earnings in the past 12 months for people with a disability. This is 68 percent of the median earnings, $30,928, for those without a disability. (Both figures pertain to the civilian, noninstitutionalized population 16 years and older, with earnings in the past 12 months.)
Source: 2013 American Community Survey, Table B18140
<http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=ACS_13_1YR_B18140&prodType=table>

Component ID: #ti124665387

Mobility

Note: The source for the data in this section is Desire to Move and Residential Mobility: 2010-2011, a report which uses data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation.

12.5%

Percentage of householders with a disability who desired to move to another residence, higher than the corresponding figure of 8.2 percent for those without a disability. Those with mental disabilities were the most likely to desire to move (20.6 percent).

17.3%

Percentage of householders with a disability who desired to move to another residence and actually did so over a one-year period.

9.3%

Percentage of all householders with a disability who moved to another residence over a one-year period.

Component ID: #ti536796985

The following is a list of observances typically covered by the Census Bureau’s Facts for Features series:

African-American History Month (February)
Super Bowl
Valentine's Day (Feb. 14)
Women's History Month (March)
Irish-American Heritage Month (March)/
      St. Patrick's Day (March 17)
Earth Day (April 22)
Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (May)
Older Americans Month (May)
Mother's Day
Hurricane Season Begins (June 1)
Father's Day
The Fourth of July (July 4)
Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act (July 26)
Back to School (August)
Labor Day
Grandparents Day
Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15)
Unmarried and Single Americans Week
Halloween (Oct. 31)
American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month (November)
Veterans Day (Nov. 11)
Thanksgiving Day
The Holiday Season (December)

Editor’s note: The preceding data were collected from a variety of sources and may be subject to sampling variability and other sources of error. Facts for Features are customarily released about two months before an observance in order to accommodate magazine production timelines. Questions or comments should be directed to the Census Bureau’s Public Information Office: telephone: 301-763-3030; or e-mail: pio@census.gov.

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