Lord Freud will be delighted. He said disabled people weren’t “worth the full wage” nearly four years ago.

While then-prime minister David Cameron said the suggestion, together with Lord Freud’s claim that disabled people could work for £2 per hour, were “not the views of anyone in government”, it seems employers agreed with the idea.

Then again, the Conservative government – while it was still being run by David Cameron – promised a White Paper on improving employment for the disabled, but when the opportunity arose, they bottled it.

So it seems employers and the government of the day have taken their lead from the hated Freud after all. Does anybody in Parliament – at all – have the guts to stand up to them?

A new TUC report … finds that the disability pay gap has increased to its highest level since 2013.

In 2017 average hourly pay for disabled workers was £9.90, compared to £11.40 for non-disabled workers – a disability pay gap of £1.50 an hour and £2,730 a year.

The disability pay gap has now reached 15% – its highest level since 2013 when the government began publishing comparable data using the 2010 Equality Act definition of disability.

The other key findings include:

  • Low-paid work: Disabled workers are more likely to work in lower-paid occupations than non-disabled workers.
  • Education: Fewer disabled people have higher levels of education which may make it harder to get jobs with higher rates of pay. But even when disabled workers have the same level of education a pay gap remains.
  • Gender: Disabled women face a larger pay gap than disabled men. Compared to non-disabled men, the pay gap is 13% for disabled men and 22% for disabled women.
  • Working hours: More disabled workers are part-time (36.4%) than non-disabled workers (23.4%), which partly accounts for the gap.

Source: Disabled workers paid £2,730 a year less than non-disabled workers


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