As of July 25, 2012: 

Nearly 1 in 5 People Have a Disability in the U.S., Census Bureau Reports

Report Released to Coincide with 22nd Anniversary of the ADA

Excerpt: 

The report shows that 41 percent of those age 21 to 64 with any disability were employed, compared with 79 percent of those with no disability. Along with the lower likelihood of having a job came the higher likelihood of experiencing persistent poverty; that is, continuous poverty over a 24-month period. Among people age 15 to 64 with severe disabilities, 10.8 percent experienced persistent poverty; the same was true for 4.9 percent of those with a nonsevere disability and 3.8 percent of those with no disability.

Other highlights:

    • People in the oldest age group — 80 and older — were about eight times more likely to have a disability as those in the youngest group — younger than 15 (71 percent compared with 8 percent). The probability of having a severe disability is only one in 20 for those 15 to 24 while it is one in four for those 65 to 69.
    • About 8.1 million people had difficulty seeing, including 2.0 million who were blind or unable to see.
    • About 7.6 million people experienced difficulty hearing, including 1.1 million whose difficulty was severe. About 5.6 million used a hearing aid.


    • Roughly 30.6 million had difficulty walking or climbing stairs, or used a wheelchair, cane, crutches or walker.
    • About 19.9 million people had difficulty lifting and grasping. This includes, for instance, trouble lifting an object like a bag of groceries, or grasping a glass or a pencil.
    • Difficulty with at least one activity of daily living was cited by 9.4 million noninstitutionalized adults. These activities included getting around inside the home, bathing, dressing and eating. Of these people, 5 million needed the assistance of others to perform such an activity.
    • About 15.5 million adults had difficulties with one or more instrumental activities of daily living. These activities included doing housework, using the phone and preparing meals. Of these, nearly 12 million required assistance.
    • Approximately 2.4 million had Alzheimer’s disease, senility or dementia.
    • Being frequently depressed or anxious such that it interfered with ordinary activities was reported by 7.0 million adults.
    • Adults age 21 to 64 with disabilities had median monthly earnings of $1,961 compared with $2,724 for those with no disability.
    • Overall, the uninsured rates for adults 15 to 64 were not statistically different by disability status: 21.0 percent for people with severe disabilities, 21.3 percent for those with nonsevere disabilities and 21.9 percent for those with no disability.

In addition to the statistics from this report, the Census Bureau also produces annual disability estimates from the American Community Survey (ACS). While the ACS uses a different definition of disability than in this report, it is capable of producing estimates of the population with disabilities at subnational geographies like states, counties, places and metropolitan areas. The Census Bureau has been collecting data about certain disabilities since 1830, when Congress added questions to the census on difficulty hearing, seeing and speaking.




Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program, 2011   
https://www.ssa.gov/policy/docs/statcomps/di_asr/2011/sect01.html
youtu   
https://youtu.be/W3_RjJtd6Eo