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People with disabilities maintain record labor force participation rate, outperforming people without disabilities

nTIDE March 2023 jobs report: people with disabilities maintain record labor force participation rate, outperforming people with
This graphic compares the labor market indicators for March 2022 and March 2023, showing increases for people with and without disabilities. Credit: Kessler Foundation

People with disabilities maintained their record labor force participation rate in March, continuing to outperform people without disabilities, according to today's National Trends in Disability Employment—semi-monthly update (nTIDE), issued by Kessler Foundation and the University of New Hampshire's Institute on Disability (UNH-IOD).

Year-to-year, people with and without disabilities showed gains in employment, reflecting the economy's ongoing recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Year-to-year nTIDE numbers (comparing March 2022 to March 2023)

Based on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Jobs Report released today, the labor force participation rate for people with disabilities (ages 16–64) increased from 37.8% in March 2022 to 40.2% in March 2023 (up 6.3% or 2.4 percentage points).

For people without disabilities (ages 16–64), the labor force participation rate also increased from 77.2% in March 2022 to 77.6% in March 2023 (up 0.5% or 0.4 percentage points). The labor force participation rate reflects the percentage of people who are in the labor force (working, on temporary layoff, on furlough, or actively looking for work in the last four weeks) relative to the (the number of people in the labor force divided by the number of people in the total population multiplied by 100).

"The labor force participation rate was unchanged from last month, 40.2% in February 2023 and March 2023, showing that over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, people with disabilities remained in the labor force, and continue to outperform people without disabilities," remarked Andrew Houtenville, Ph.D., professor of economics and research director of the UNH-IOD. "Several factors may be driving the increased participation of people with disabilities, including an increase in job opportunities and the pressing need to work as families face inflationary prices," he added.

With regard to employment, the employment-to-population ratio for working-age people with disabilities (ages 16–64) increased from 34.1% in March 2022 to 36.6% in March 2023 (up 7.3% or 2.5 percentage points). For working-age people without disabilities (ages 16–64), the employment-to-population ratio also increased from 74.5% in March 2022 to 74.9% in March 2023 (up 0.5% or 0.4 percentage points). The employment-to-population ratio, a key indicator, reflects the percentage of people who are working relative to the total population (the number of people working divided by the number of people in the total population multiplied by 100).

"We saw a year-to-year improvement in the employment-to-population ratio for both people with and without disabilities from March 2022 to this year," said John O'Neill, Ph.D., director of the Center for Employment and Disability Research at Kessler Foundation. "This probably reflects the emergence of the economy from the COVID-19 pandemic," he added.

Month-to-month nTIDE numbers (comparing February 2023 to March 2023)

Compared to last month, the labor force participation rate for people with disabilities (ages 16–64) remained unchanged from February 2023 to March 2023 at 40.2%. For people without disabilities (ages 16–64), the participation rate increased slightly from 77.3% in February 2023 to 77.6% in March 2023 (up 0.4% or 0.3 percentage points).

Regarding employment, the employment-to-population ratio for people with disabilities (ages 16–64) decreased slightly from 36.9% in February 2023 to 36.6% in March 2023 (down 0.8% or 0.3 percentage points). For people without disabilities (ages 16–64), the -to-population ratio increased from 74.4% in February 2023 to 74.9% in March 2023 (up 0.7% or 0.5 percentage points).

In March, among ages 16–64, the 5,997,000 workers with represented 4.0% of the total 149,952,000 workers in the U.S.

Provided by Kessler Foundation

Citation: People with disabilities maintain record labor force participation rate, outperforming people without disabilities (2023, April 10) retrieved 19 June 2024 from https://phys.org/news/2023-04-people-disabilities-labor-outperforming.html
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