People with disabilities are considered the world's largest minority. Approximately 15 percent of the world's population, or one in seven people, has a disability. People with disabilities face a number of challenges on a daily basis, including physical barriers, societal attitudes, discrimination and restrictive policies.
Each year, Dec. 3 is recognized as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. This day is an important reminder to everyone to make the world more inclusive for the 1 billion people in the world who have a disability. Today is a great opportunity to learn more about disabilities as well as ways that you can help make a difference.
What Disability Means
A disability is a condition that significantly impairs a person's movements, senses or activities. This includes physical, sensory, cognitive, intellectual or mental impairments as well as many chronic diseases. Some people are born with disabilities, whereas others become disabled due to injuries or accidents, including conflicts such as war.
Because it's more difficult for people with disabilities to access and afford care and services, people with a disability generally have poorer health, lower education levels, fewer opportunities and higher rates of poverty. A lack of transportation services and communication tools contributes to this problem.
Get The Facts About Disabilities
Most people are aware of challenges the disabled people in their communities face, but there are many factors that often go unnoticed:
- More than 80 percent of disabled people live in developing countries where transportation and communication options are more limited.
- There are more than 100 million children with a disability.
- Children with disabilities are nearly four times as likely to be the victims of violence as children without disabilities.
- Adults with disabilities are 1.5 times more likely to be victims of violence. Those with a mental health condition are nearly four times as likely as non-disabled adults to experience violence.
- Stigmas, lack of awareness, and lack of social support all increase the likelihood of violence against people with disabilities.
- Half of disabled people are unable to afford healthcare.
Understanding disabilities is crucial for making life better for people who live with disabilities. According to the UN, research shows that the entire community sees a benefit when people with disabilities are empowered to participate fully in society. This can only happen when everyone works harder to include people with disabilities and remove the barriers that disabled people face.
Many veterans are among the population of people living with disabilities. An estimated or 22.5 percent of veterans have a service-connected disability. In other words, that's nearly 2.2 million veterans. Many veterans face challenges when returning to a civilian life, but veterans with a disability often have a much harder time finding employment, getting the healthcare they need and feeling included in the community.
If you'd like to support disabled and other veteran programs on International Day of People with Disabilities, consider making a simple car donation. When you donate to Vehicles For Veterans, the proceeds from your donation will help fund programs that serve veterans. Make a difference for veterans today just by calling 1-855-811-4838 or using our online car donation form.