Under the 2010 Equality Act you are a disabled person if you have a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on your ability to do normal daily activities.

While some disabled people may have impairments which are visible and immediately obvious, like using a wheelchair, other impairments like diabetes, dyslexia or mental illness are often invisible and therefore people’s needs are not immediately recognisable. For more information on disabled people in Hackney, please see the Hackney profile.

Why is disability protected by the 2010 Equality Act?

Disabled people encounter discrimination and disadvantage in many aspects of life:

  • disabled people are more likely to experience unfair treatment at work than non-disabled people. In 2008, 19% of disabled people experienced unfair treatment at work compared to 13% non-disabled people
  • around a third of disabled people experience difficulties accessing public, commercial and leisure goods and services
  • 20% of households with at least one disabled person live in poverty compared to 16% of households with no disabled people
  • 46% of disabled people are in employment, compared with 76.2% of non-disabled people
  • around a fifth of disabled people report having difficulties accessing transport
  • one in three households with a disabled person still live in accommodation that is not classed as decent

The Equality Act also protects people who are caring for a disabled child or relative as they will be protected by virtue of their association with a disabled person.

Information and support

Local organisations

National organisations

Other resources

We have produced a paper, profiling the needs of disabled people in Hackney.

Hackney Disability Backup has produced a language code to encourage public to use positive language when talking about disabled people.

Creating inclusive communities

Disability Rights UK’s guidance on inclusive communities contains examples of good practice in relation to:

  • reporting hate crime
  • participation of disabled people in decision making and scrutiny
  • access and planning decisions
  • improving employment
  • access to elected office, and
  • digital inclusion

Improving access to goods and services



Physical access



Education and youth provision

Sport and leisure

Hate crime

Mental health

People with autism

People with epilepsy

  • Epilepsy Action publish a wide range of printed material and DVDs on all aspects of epilepsy including diagnosis, syndromes, legal rights, first aid, mental health, sport, education and driving.

Research and insight

Page updated on: 23 August 2019