Exposure to violence is damaging to people's personal health and wellbeing and can limit their social, civic and economic participation in society. We know that people with disabilities are more likely to witness and be the victims of violence, including violent criminal acts, than their non-disabled peers.
Unfortunately there is no system in place for routinely monitoring (at State, Territory or Federal level in Australia) the extent to which people with a disability are more or less likely to be the victims of crime. Neither the NSW Recorded Crime Statistics nor the Australian Bureau of Statistics annual survey of Crime Victimisation in Australia record whether the victims of crime have a disability. As a result, we simply do not know how many people with disabilities in NSW each year have been the victims of crime (or potentially criminal acts), the magnitude of the additional risk of being a victim if a person has a disability and whether indicators are changing over time.
In this brief report we used data from an ongoing national survey, the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey to try to answer some of these questions.