Level of family and household income

Having a person with disability living in the household is associated with lower levels of household income.

Households with a person with disability are more likely to be in the lower range of household weekly income:

  • 37% with a person with disability have a low level of household weekly income, compared with 19% of households that do not

  • 28% with a child with disability have a low level of household weekly income, similar to those without a child with disability (25%)

  • 20% with a child with disability have a high-level household weekly income, compared with 32% of households that do not (Figure 1).

Families where a parent has disability are more likely to be in the lower income range:

  • 29% of families with a parent with disability have a low level of family income, 52% mid-range and 19% high range
  • 17% of families without a parent with disability have a low level, 48% mid-range and 35% higher range
  • almost half (47%) of one-parent families with a parent with disability have a low level of family income (Figure 2).

Families with a child with disability are also more likely to be in the lower range of family income:

  • 19% of couple families with a child with disability have a low level of family income, compared with 14% of couple families without a child with disability

  • 48% of single-parent families with a child with disability have a low level of family income, compared with 39% of single parent families without a child with disability (Figure 3).

Primary carer income

Depending on the needs of the person receiving care, an informal carer may need to reduce their working hours or may not be able to earn income from wages or salary (Table 1).

Table 1. Income source of primary carers whose main recipient of care is a person with disability, 2015 (%)

Main source of personal income

% of primary carers

Government support

58.3

Wages or salary

26.5

Other sources of income

12.6

No sources of income

2.2

Source: ABS 2016.

As with people with disability, primary carers of people with disability are more likely to be in the mid-range of personal income:

  • 29% have a low personal income
  • 58% mid-range
  • 14% high range (Figure 4).

Most (55%) primary carers report their personal income has decreased or expenses increased because of their role (Figure 4).

References

ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistics) 2016. Microdata: disability, ageing and carers, Australia, 2015. ABS cat. no. 4430.0.30.002. Canberra: ABS. AIHW analysis of TableBuilder.

ABS 2017. Census of Population and Housing: understanding the Census and Census data, Australia, 2016. ABS cat. no. 2900.0. Canberra: ABS.