Access all areas: Disability survey

Some 90% of people surveyed by the BBC believe the government should provide funds to make the workplace accessible for people with disabilities.

But 40% felt disabled people turned down job offers even when they were physically capable of doing them.

The survey found that attitudes to disability and disabled people's rights varied between age groups and social groups.

Social groups

AB - senior managerial/professional

C1 - junior management, small business

C2 - skilled manual

DE - state pensioners, students, unemployed

People in lower income groups were found to be less compassionate on the issue of disability than skilled people, with older people sometimes more intolerant than the young.

Analysis from ComRes, which carried out the survey of 1,000 people in Great Britain, suggested people were very willing to acknowledge equal rights, but "very shallow" in their knowledge of what that involved.

The questions and results of the Disability Survey are set out below. A full breakdown of results is available on the ComRes website.

People with disabilities often seem reluctant to work even if they are capable of doing a job

ComRes analysis:

  • There are some stark differences by social group - 30% of people in social group AB agree, compared to 55% of people in social group C2.
  • People in the youngest age group stand out from others, with 54% of all 18-24 year olds saying that they agree compared to 35% of all people aged 55-64.
  • ComRes Chairman Andrew Hawkins says: "Clearly the results show that 40% of the public think that some people who are disabled are work-shy. But it doesn't mean that they think they are all lazy. Lumped into that 40% are doubtless some who believe there are those who are not genuinely disabled, so they are able to work and so are scamming the system. But equally, there is no evidence that the public thinks disabled people are lazy. It's more likely that they recognise that if people have been out of the job market for any length of time their confidence is likely to have suffered and they are likely to feel they are stuck in a rut."
It is right and fair for the government to make available whatever funds are necessary for disabled people to live independently.

ComRes analysis:

  • There is little variance by any demographic type.
The Government should fund disabled people so that they can have access to workplaces

ComRes analysis:

  • Broadly speaking, younger people are more likely to agree compared to older people age groups.
Government legislation to give disabled people access to work and independent living has gone too far

ComRes analysis:

  • There is a clear split by social group - people in AB (19%) and C1 (26%) are notably less likely than people in social groups C2 (38%) and DE (30%) to agree with this statement.
  • The figure that 27% of people think legislation has gone too far suggests they see statutory demands as an imposition.

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