Changes in the employment status of people with and without disabilities in the United States during the COVID-19 pandemic

Article published in the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (APMR). Using data from the monthly Current Population Survey, this paper provides monthly employment and unemployment statistics for people with and without disabilities in the United States, before and during the COVID-19 pandemic to-date (January 2021). Estimates show that, like workers without disabilities, workers with disabilities experienced unemployment at the beginning of the pandemic and continued to remain engaged in the labor force. The authors' analysis finds that employment rates dropped from 74.8% to 63.2% for those without disabilities and from 31.1% to 26.4% for those with disabilities between February 2020 and April 2020 but gradually improved in the succeeding months. As the pandemic continued, the percentage of unemployed people with and without disabilities on temporary layoff decreased and those looking for work increased.

Disability area: 
Cross disability
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Project name: 
Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Employment Policy and Measurement
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Product type: 
Journal article
Date published: