One in four New Zealanders over the age of 15 has a disability.

  • The unemployment rate for disabled people is over twice that of non-disabled people (although this has been trending down over the past three years)
  • Disabled people earn less, on average, than non-disabled people.
  • Disabled women have a pay gap of 19.0 percent when compared to all men, and a gap of 3.8 percent when compared to disabled men.

To improve these outcomes, disabled people need better employment opportunities. Disabled women need fairer recruitment and remuneration policies within their organisations.

The Ministry of Disabled People provides a range of resources for employers and business owners wishing to employ disabled people, or wishing to make their workplaces more accommodating for disabled employees.

You can find more information about disabled people in New Zealand from the Stats NZ Disability Survey (last conducted in 2013). The figures below are survey results taken from Stats NZ’s Labour Market Statistics (disability) June 2022 quarter. Less than 3 percent of the New Zealand labour market are disabled, so these statistics are prone to sampling error and should be taken as estimates only.

  Disabled Non-disabled Total
Measure Men Women Men Women Men Women
Labour Force Participation Rate 43.1 47.1 87.2 79.1 85.4 78.0
Employment Rate 38.9 44.3 84.6 76.3 82.7 75.2
Unemployment Rate 9.7 6.1 3.0 3.6 3.1 3.6
Median Hourly Earnings $26.00 $25.00 $31.00 $28.09 $30.85 $28.00

Find out how we can close the gender pay gap in New Zealand...