Credible, consistent data is critical to creating change. ODEP promotes the availability and use of disability data and statistics to further education, research, and policy initiatives to improve employment opportunities and outcomes for people with disabilities.

This work was first revealed in 2008, when after several years of research and testing, new questions were added to the monthly Current Population Survey (CPS) to gauge the employment status of people with disabilities. The questions, which were originally developed for use in the American Community Survey (ACS), were added after extensive collaboration between ODEP, DOL's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and other stakeholders, and were sponsored by ODEP. Prior to this, there was no way to measure the labor force status of people with disabilities on a regular basis. Today, these data are updated monthly, providing citizens and policymakers with reliable and accurate information on a topic of importance to America's workforce and economy.

Disability Labor Force Statistics

These statistics are obtained directly from BLS publication of monthly aggregate series derived from the Current Population Survey (CPS) and are not seasonally-adjusted. Annual averages are calculated over the 12 months of that calendar year, and 12-month moving averages (12m MAs) are calculated ending in the latest month for which data is available. The age range 16-64 is commonly considered to be the “working-age population”, while the age range 16 and older is the entire age range for which the CPS reports labor force data. “M” and “F” in the column headings indicate the data in that column is limited to men and women, respectively.

Persons with a Disability
Labor Force StatisticJanuary 2024202312 month moving average12 month moving average
age 16 to 64age 16 and olderage 16 to 64age 16 and olderage 16 to 64age 16 and oldermales age 16 to 64females age 16 to 64
Labor Force Participation Rate40.5%24.5%40.3%24.2%40.2%24.2%41.5%39.2%
Employment-Population Ratio37.8%22.9%37.2%22.5%37.1%22.5%38.2%36.2%
Unemployment Rate6.5%6.6%7.7%7.2%7.7%7.2%7.7%7.6%
Persons without a Disability
Labor Force StatisticJanuary 2024202312 month moving average12 month moving average
age 16 to 64age 16 and olderage 16 to 64age 16 and olderage 16 to 64age 16 and oldermales age 16 to 64females age 16 to 64
Labor Force Participation Rate77.3%67.6%77.7%68.1%77.8%68.1%82.8%72.7%
Employment-Population Ratio74.2%64.9%75.0%65.8%75.0%65.8%79.7%70.3%
Unemployment Rate4.0%3.9%3.5%3.5%3.5%3.5%3.7%3.3%

Source: Current Population Survey, Bureau of Labor Statistics

Definitions:

  • Labor Force Participation Rate: Equal to the labor force (sum of employed and unemployed) divided by the entire population (civilian, non-institutionalized).
  • Employment-Population Ratio: Equal to the employed divided by the entire population (civilian, non-institutionalized).
  • Unemployment Rate: Equal to the unemployed divided by the labor force (sum of employed and unemployed).

2023 Annual Youth Labor Force Participation Rate and Unemployment Rate

2023 Youth Labor Force Participation Rate
AgeDisabilityNo Disability
Age 16 to 1927.0%37.5%
Age 20 to 2451.8%72.5%

 

2023 Youth Unemployment Rate
AgeDisabilityNo Disability
Age 16 to 1918.0%11.0%
Age 20 to 2411.8%6.4%

Generated using unpublished data obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Table 1. Labor force status of the civilian noninstitutional population by sex, race, Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, age, and disability status, Annual Average 2023 (Source: Current Population Survey)


2023 Annual Labor Force Statistics by Disability Status and Race/Ethnicity

Persons with a Disability, Aged 16-64, 2023
Labor Force StatisticHispanicWhiteBlackAsianOtherTotal
Labor Force Participation Rate39.6%42.7%32.6%37.1%37.5%40.3%
Employment-Population Ratio35.9%39.8%29.2%34.3%34.4%37.2%
Unemployment Rate9.4%6.8%10.2%7.5%8.4%7.7%

 

Persons without a Disability, Aged 16-64, 2023
Labor Force StatisticHispanicWhiteBlackAsianOtherTotal
Labor Force Participation Rate75.2%79.4%76.3%75.6%73.5%77.7%
Employment-Population Ratio71.9%77.2%72.1%73.4%69.3%75.0%
Unemployment Rate4.5%2.7%5.4%2.9%5.6%3.5%

Source: Current Population Survey, Bureau of Labor Statistics

Notes: The category labelled "Other" combines the three categories of American Indian and Alaska Native, Hawaiian and Pacific Islander, and multiple races; all categories after Hispanic are limited to non-Hispanics.


General Disability Employment Statistics Resources

Other Resources

Commonly Used Terms

  • People with jobs are employed.
  • People who are jobless, looking for jobs, and available for work are unemployed.
  • People who are employed or unemployed but looking for jobs and available for work are in the labor force.
  • People who are neither employed nor unemployed are not in the labor force.
  • Labor force measures are based on the civilian, non-institutional population 16 years old and over.