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11,532 people with disabilities registered in 2008

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11,532 people with disabilities registered in 2008To mark the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the National Statistics Office has issued a set of statistics compiled from various sources including the National Commission of Persons with Disability (KNPD) and the Employment and Training Corporation (ETC).

In 2008, 11,532 persons were registered as having a disability. This is equivalent to 3 per cent of the total population. 54 per cent of persons with disabilities were males. Disabilities were most prevalent in the older age groups, particulary amongst persons aged 75 and over, who accounted for 29 per cent of the total number of registered persons having a disability.

Of all persons with registered disabilities during 2008, 7,801 had a physical impairment. 63 per cent of these were aged 60 and over. 9,417 persons were in possession of a special identity card. In the same year, 6,458 persons had a blue sticker, which enables individuals with disabilities to park their cars in reserved spaces in public car parks. There were also 278 new applications for exemption from payment of car registration tax and/or customs duty.

According to the Survey on Income and Living Conditions (SILC), in 2008 there were 5,750 persons aged between 16 and 64, whose self-defined economic status was reported as being permanently disabled and/or unfit to work. The average annual disposable income of these persons was of €8,582. This is 25 per cent lower than the average annual disposable income of all persons living in private households.

Government expenditure on disability pensions increased by 22 per cent in the year under review, when compared to 2004. Over the same span of years, the number of beneficiaries increased by 7 per cent.

In 2008, the number of persons with a disability registering under Part 1 of the unemployment register totalled 299. This is equivalent to an increase of 9 per cent over the previous year.

According to the Census of Population and Housing, in 2005, 12 per cent of persons with disabilities were living in institutional households. As at November 2005, 29 per cent of persons with disabilities were living in the Northern Harbour District. This district is the most populated one in Malta.

Also, according to Census data, as at 2005, 4 per cent of persons with disabilities had achieved a tertiary level of education. 58 per cent of persons aged 15 and over having a disability stopped studying after achieving, at most, a primary level of education.

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