New Statscan report focuses on episodic disabilities
Using data from the 2017 Canadian Survey on Disability, Statistics Canada has taken a close look at the demographic, employment and workplace accommodation profiles of people with episodic disabilities in a report called The Dynamics of Disability: Progressive, Recurrent or Fluctuating Limitations. In the report, released in December 2019, Statscan compares relatively stable disabilities that result in consistent and unchanging limitations with three categories of episodic disabilities: those with progressive, recurrent or fluctuating limitations. It refers to the concept of different types of changing limitations as "disability dynamics."
The main findings of the report include the following:
- Of the 3.8 million people with disability dynamics (representing 61% of all people with disabilities 15 years of age and older), nearly 1.4 million (37%) experienced progressive limitations that worsened over time, over 1.5 million (41%) experienced recurrent limitations that included periods of a month or more without limitations, and over 0.8 million (22%) experienced fluctuating limitations that changed within any given month.
- The employment rate was highest for those with recurrent limitations (65%) and lowest for those with progressive limitations (40%). For those with fluctuating or continuous limitations, the employment rates were in the middle range at 53% and 59% respectively.
- Around half of employed persons with progressive or fluctuating limitations (56% and 49%, respectively) required workplace accommodations. By comparison, less than a third (31%) of employed persons with recurrent or continuous limitations required workplace accommodations.