Scotland's Wellbeing: national outcomes for disabled people

Analysis of the National Performance Framework (NPF) outcome indicators from the perspective of disability.


1. Relevant in the sense that the indicators refer to individual outcomes, as distinct from, for example, the value of international exports, or the size of wildlife populations. 

2. The 2011 Scottish Census specifically asks about ‘long-term health problem or disability’, defining this as “A long-term health problem or disability that limits a person’s day-to-day activity, and has lasted, or is expected to last, at least 12 months. This includes problems that are related to old age.”  

3. Scottish Government (2014) Analysis of Equality Results from the 2011 Census, including Ethnicity, Religion, and Disability. Scottish Government. Available here. The designations used in this report are based on those found within the census and related reports. 

4. The Scottish Core Survey Questions pools demographic data from a range of surveys, to provide estimates of variability within smaller populations. It uses the harmonised question specified in Figure 1.1 to ascertain the presence of a disability. 

5. Scottish Government (2019) Scottish Surveys Core Questions 2017. Available here,

6. This survey uses the parameter ‘Physical or mental health condition’, which is a ‘Yes’/’No’ question. Answering yes is interpreted as a proxy for disability in the context of this report. 

7. The Family Resources Survey defines disability as “any physical or mental health condition that lasts or is expected to last 12 months or more, and which limits their ability to carry out day-to-day activities.” 

8. This data is available in the table “Additional poverty analysis – 2019”, in the file “Proportion of children in combined low income and material deprivation by whether they live in a household with disabled household members, or with lone parents, and by child age group.” Available here. 

9. GUS defines disability by an affirmative answer to the question Does ^ChildName have any longstanding illness or disability? By longstanding I mean anything that has troubled ^him over a period of time or that is likely to affect ^him over a period of time” . The results of this analysis include non-limiting conditions under the heading of ‘disability’, although distinctions between limited and non-limited are applied where these are relevant. See here, pp. 1-2. 

10. Scottish Government (2013) The Impact of Disability on the Lives of Young Children: Analysis of Growing up in Scotland data. Scottish Government. Available here

11. Chatzitheochari, S., et. al. (2014) Bullying experiences among disabled children and young people in England: Evidence from two longitudinal studies. Institute of Education, University of London, Working Paper No. 14-11. Available here

12. This data can be found in Supplementary Child Poverty Tables found in the ‘Supporting Files’ section of the Poverty and income inequality in Scotland: 2015-2018 report, available here

13. The Scottish Household Survey adopts the harmonised definition described above. More information available here, pp. 28. 

14. This is defined in SHS, available here.

15. In this instance, the data was made available in three parts, rather than two.

16. The SCJS adopts the harmonised question for disability, i.e. Do you have a physical or mental health condition or illness lasting or expected to last 12 months or more, before clarifying whether the condition is limiting ‘a lot’ or limiting ‘a little’.

17. These figures, alongside other figures from the SCJS, can be obtained in the supplementary data tables accompanying the 2017/18 SCJS report, available here

18. EHRC (2013) Crime and disabled people Baseline statistical analysis of measures from the formal legal inquiry into disability-related harassment. Research report 90. Available here

19. EHRC (2016) Crime and disabled people: Measures of disability-related harassment. Research report 103. Available here

20. Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (2018) Hate Crime in Scotland. Available here

21. Leonard Cheshire (2019) Reports of online disability hate crime soar by 33%. Press release. Available here

22. House of Commons Petitions Committee (2019) Online abuse and the experience of disabled people. First Report of Session 2017-18. House of Commons. Available here

23. At present, figures are available broken down by long-term illness, which includes individuals with both limiting and non-limiting conditions. 

24. The publications of the Scottish Household Survey from these years do not distinguish between those with limiting and non-limiting conditions for the purposes of comparing discrimination/ harassment. Therefore, the results here refer to those with both limiting and non-limiting long-term illnesses. 

25. This survey provided respondents with a list of conditions and asked them “Do you have any of the following conditions which have lasted, or are expected to last, at least 12 months?”. An option for ‘other’ and ‘prefer not to say’ were included. 

26. Creative Scotland (2016) Screen Equalities, Diversity and Inclusion Survey Findings. Available here

27. See chapter 7 of the SHS 2017 Annual Report, available here

28. Community Enterprise in Scotland (2017) Social Enterprise in Scotland: Census 2017. Available here.

29. Annual Population Survey, Jan – Dec 2018, Office for National Statistics. Publication is forthcoming. 

30. The Annual Participation Measure uses statistics from the annual Pupil Census, which records how many students are declared or assessed as having a disability. The 2018 Annual Participation Measure for 16-19 year olds can be found here

31. Skills Development Scotland (2019) Modern Apprenticeship Statistics. Full Year Report 2018/19. Available here. 

32. DWP and DHSC (2018) Characteristics of disabled people in employment: April to June 2017. UK Government. Available here in Table 5 of the accompanying datasets. 

33. This data is available within the supplementary tables accompanying the publication Scottish Government (2019) School leaver attainment and initial destinations: statistics. Available here. The definition of disability in this context refers to whether a pupil can be declared or assessed disabled.

34. Higher Education Student Statistics (2019) UK, 2017/18 – Student number and characteristics. Available here. Disability, in this context, is measured via institutions collecting data on their student populations. The definition used and the recommended question for collecting this data can be found here.

35. Scottish Government. Access to outdoor recreation by older people in Scotland. Available here

36. For more information, see here

37. This data comes from the Annual Population Survey, Jan – Dec 2018, Office for National Statistics. Publication, however, is forthcoming. 

38. EHRC (2017) The Disability Pay Gap. Equality and Human Rights Commission Research Report 107. Available here. The data used in the report is derived from the Labour Force Survey for the period 1997-2014. The Labour Force Survey. The Labour Force Survey establishes the presence of a disability by asking ‘Do you have any physical or mental health conditions or illnesses lasting or expecting to last 12 months or more’, in addition to a range of questions establishing whether this limits day to day activities, the specifics of the condition and how it relates to a person’s capacity to undertake paid work. 

39. Scottish Government (2019) Regional employment patterns in Scotland: statistics from the Annual Population Survey 2018. Available here. The Annual Population Survey is a boosted – i.e. involving more participants – version of the LFS data. “The Annual Population Survey (APS) is the primary source for information on local labour markets. It combines results from the LFS and the English, Welsh and Scottish Labour Force Survey boosts. The boost increases the sample size in Scotland, which means the APS can provide more robust labour market estimates for local areas compared to the main LFS. The Scottish Government funds the boost to the LFS sample in Scotland, taking the sample size from approximately 5,000 households each year to 17,000 households.”  

40. Scottish Government (2019) Regional employment patterns in Scotland: statistics from the Annual Population Survey 2018. Available here.

41. This uses data from the Annual Population Survey 2018. It is published in Regional Employment Patterns: statistics from the Annual Population Survey 2018, available here. The data can be accessed via the supplementary data table 3.5. 

42. Annual Population Survey, Jan-Dec 2018, Office for National Statistics. 

43. Scottish Government (2018) A Fairer Scotland for Disabled People: Employment Action Plan. Available here.

44. TUC (2018) Disability employment and pay gaps 2018. Available here

45. EHRC (2017) The Disability Pay Gap. Equality and Human Rights Commission Research Report 107. Available here.

46. Those with limiting long-term illnesses, excluding those with non-limiting long-term illnesses. 

47. NHS Digital (2016) Mental Health and Wellbeing in England: Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey 2014. Available here

48. Naylor, C., et al (2012) Long term conditions and mental health: the cost of co-morbidities. The King’s Fund. Centre for Mental Health. Available here

49. Emerson, E. (2018). Smoking among adults with and without disabilities in the UK. Journal of Public Health, 40(4), e502-e509.

50. Public Health England (2018) Physical activity for general health benefits in disabled adults: Summary of a rapid evidence review for the UK Chief Medical Officers’ update of the physical activity guidelines. Available here.

51. Data available in ‘Supporting Files’, from Scottish Health Survey 2017. Available here.  

52. Department of Health (2014) Premature Deaths of People with Learning Disabilities: Progress Update. UK Government. Available here. See also: Heslop et al (2013) Confidential Inquiry into premature deaths of people with learning disabilities (CIPOLD). Final report. Available here

53. Public Health England (2018) Health profile for England: 2018. Available here.

54. EHRC (2018) Is Scotland Fairer? The state of equality and human rights 2018. Available here.

55. Social Security Scotland. The charter can be found here

56. This data comes from the FRS. Disability in this context is defined in a manner consistent with the definition outlined in Chapter 1, i.e. From 2012/13 disabled people have been identified as those who report any physical or mental health condition or illness that lasts or is expected to last 12 months or more, and which limits their ability to carry out day-to-day activities. See here for more information. 

57. These figures can be explored in more detail in Poverty and income inequality in Scotland: 2015-2018. Available here

58. Scottish Government (2019) Poverty and income inequality in Scotland, 2015-18. Available here.

59. Tinson, A., et. al. (2016) Disability and poverty. Why disability must be at the centre of poverty reduction. New Policy Institute. Available here

60. The Wealth and Assets Survey enquires about disability by asking ‘Do you have any long-standing illness, disability or infirmity? By long-standing I mean anything that troubled you over a period of time or that is likely to affect you over a period of time?’, Followed by ‘Does this illness or disability limit your activities in any way?’. Respondents are defined as disabled if the long-term health conditions limits their activities. 

61. Loopstra, R. and Lalor, D. (2017) Financial insecurity, food insecurity, and disability: The profile of people receiving emergency food assistance from The Trussell Trust Foodbank Network in Britain. The Trussell Trust. Available here.

62. McKnight, A. (2014) Disabled People’s Financial Histories: Uncovering the disability wealth-penalty. Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, London School of Economics. Available here.

63. Scope (2019) The Disability Price Tag 2019: Policy Report. Available here

64. Scope (2018) Out in the Cold. Available here

65. NPI (2016) Disability and poverty. Why disability must be at the centre of poverty reduction. Data on page 11. Available here. Disability is defined as “people whose usual activities are somewhat or severely limited due to a health problem that has lasted at least 6 months”

66. Department for Work and Pensions (2019) Income Dynamics: Working-age adults in persistent low income. Available here.

67. Scottish Government (2019) Additional Poverty Analysis - 2019. In table Child poverty measures by priority characteristics. Available here.

68. EHRC (2018) Housing and disabled people: Scotland’s Hidden Crisis. Available here

69. This is sourced from the 2015 Housing Conditions Survey produced by the Scottish Government and available here

70. This figure is sourced from the Independent Living Movement, whose report ‘Our space, our place’ is available here. The statistics were produced as the result of an ad hoc request to the Scottish Housing Regulator.



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