A report by the Trade Unions Congress (TUC) has revealed that the average hourly rate for a disabled person was 15% lower than that of a non-disabled worker, the highest the figure has been since the government began publishing the data in 2013.

The average hourly pay for a disabled person was £9.90, compared to £11.40 for a non-disabled person – meaning that a disabled person working 35 hours a week will earn £2,730 less per year than their non-disabled counterpart, which represents just under 11 months of average food expenditure at £58 per week or almost 8 months of average travel expenditure at £79.70 per week.

While the pay gap has many causes, one of the key causes is that a higher proportion of disabled people are in part-time work; 36.3% of disabled people in the survey work part-time, while 23.4% of non-disabled people work part time. That part-time work is, on average, paid less than full-time work contributes significantly to the gap in pay.

Disabled workers are also more likely to be employed in a lower-paid occupation compared to non-disabled people. The TUC’s findings showed that people in higher positions of management, directors and senior officials are less likely to be disabled, further accounting for the gap in pay.

In addition, the pay gap for disabled women is even higher than that of a disabled man. The pay gap for a disabled man compared to a non-disabled man is 13.2%, while for a disabled woman it’s 22.1%. Compared to a disabled man, disabled women are paid a shocking 8.9% less: the pay gap of a disabled man compared to a non-disabled man is £1.80, while for a disabled woman it’s £3.40.

In the report, TUC states: “Government and employers must take steps to ensure that disabled people who want to work are able to do so, and to address the pay gap for disabled workers.

“Employers must do more to meet their Equality Act obligations to put in place reasonable adjustments for disabled workers.”

Read the report in full here.

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