Number of people
- 1 in 8 adults of working age have hearing loss .
- 5 million people of working age have hearing loss .
- Deaf people and people with hearing loss are less likely to be employed than the general population .
- Only 37% of people who report BSL as their main language are working, in comparison to 77% of people who are not disabled under the Equality Act .
Difficulties in work
- Most people who are deaf or have hearing loss have felt stressed at work because of their hearing loss .
- People worry they will be treated unfairly at work if they disclose their hearing loss .
- Hearing loss and deafness are a contributor to people deciding to retire early .
- Recent public polling (2023) found that over a quarter (26%) of people would feel uncomfortable being told to manage someone who was deaf or had hearing loss .
- Deaf people and those with hearing loss have a lower household income than people with normal hearing .
- Deaf people and those with hearing loss are overrepresented in lower status, lower paid occupations .
Benefits to business
- Deaf people and those with hearing loss and tinnitus bring diversity of thought and a wealth of talent.
- It has been shown that companies that champion disability inclusion report 30% higher profit margins compared to their peers .
- Deaf people and those with hearing loss who receive good support from colleagues and supervisors at work report better perceived productivity .
Access to Work
- Employees and employers who could benefit from the Access to Work do not necessarily know about the scheme .
- Our 2018 survey suggested only a quarter of people who have heard about Access to Work are access the scheme .
 Our hearing loss population estimates and hearing loss population projections are calculated using the most robust data available on the prevalence of hearing loss for different age groups, combined with the latest available population estimates from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Read the report on hearing in adults from the MRC National Study of Hearing.
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Facts and statements on inclusion
For information on access to services, interpreter provision and subtitles.
Facts and statements on health
For information on health, including dementia, mental health and health inequality. Information is also here about access to healthcare, including audiology, and the RNID hearing check.