According to a study by Ulster University’s Economic Policy Centre (UUEPC), the UK’s lowest employment rate for people with disabilities is found in Northern Ireland. Only slightly more than a third of the UK’s disabled population is employed, compared to more than half of the country as a whole. A third of young disabled people, aged 16 to 24, did not participate in any sort of training, employment, or education (NEET). People with disabilities who worked frequently had fewer stable occupations and earned less money. The report came to the conclusion that undervaluing the contributions that disabled people make to society and the economy of Northern Ireland is equal to ignoring the difficulties they face in seeking employment.

Based on the UUEPC study, only 36% of disabled people in Northern Ireland were employed. In Northern Ireland, 80% of people without disabilities are employed. As a result, Northern Ireland has the largest “disability employment gap” in the UK at 44%. The UUEPC inquiry also found that the pandemic’s limitations had a “disproportionate” negative impact on disabled people. According to earlier Ulster University research, broader support services for people with learning disabilities “disappeared or were markedly reduced” during the epidemic. Furthermore, it indicates a greater risk of poverty for disabled people in Northern Ireland.