Disability Issues

Prevalence of violence towards people with disabilities:

People with disabilities are much more at risk of violence than their non-disabled peers[1].

Children with disabilities are almost four times more likely to experience some form of violence than non-disabled children. They’re 3.6 times more likely to be victims of physical violence, and 2.9 times more likely to be victims of sexual violence.

Children with mental or intellectual impairments appear to be among the most vulnerable, with 4.6 times the risk of sexual violence than their non-disabled peers.

Adults with disabilities are 1.5 times more likely to be a victim of violence than those without a disability, while those with mental health conditions are at nearly four times the risk of experiencing violence.

Factors which place people with disabilities at higher risk of violence include stigma, discrimination, and ignorance about disability, as well as a lack of social support for those who care for them. Placement of people with disabilities in institutions also increases their vulnerability to violence. In these settings and elsewhere, people with communication impairments are hampered in their ability to disclose abusive experiences.

Information and help:

People First has these easy read resources:

  • Keeping Safe Feeling Safe Say No to Abuse
  • Bullying, Abuse and Neglect Easy Read Reporting Form
  • Violence and domestic abuse Information for disabled people

 Available from http://www.peoplefirst.org.nz/news-and-resources/easy-read-resources/

  • Violence and domestic abuse Information for disabled people is also available from:


To get information and find your local family violence service phone:

  • The It’s Not OK Family Violence information line 0800 456 450. 7 days a week, 9am to 11pm. Or see areyouok.org.nz
  • or 2SHINE national help line 0508 744 633. 7 days a week, 9am and 11pm.
  • Your local Age Concern (during working hours.) Find their number in the Family Services Directory (familyservices.govt.nz/directory) or in your local phone book and ask for the elder abuse service.
  • Your local Needs Assessment and Service Coordination Service (NASC) 24-hour crisis

response number you can ring if you need emergency respite. Enable NZ can help you to find the number of your local NASC. Enable 0800 17 1981 Or see www.enable.co.nz.

  • Your local Community Law Centre communitylaw.org.nz or contact Auckland Disability Law info@adl.org.nz or by phone 09 257 5140, Mobile: 027 457 5140, www.aucklanddisabilitylaw.org.nz
  • Deaf, hearing impaired and speech impaired people can use: NZ Relay 0800 4 711 711 (for non-emergency calls only) Further user information – nzrelay.co.nz

[1] http://www.who.int/disabilities/violence/en/