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Employment Outcomes for the Congenitally Deaf in Australia: Has Anything Changed?

From: American Annals of the Deaf
Volume 152, Number 4, Fall 2007
pp. 382-390 | 10.1353/aad.2008.0006

Abstract

The employment of deaf school leavers is considered by means of data from a recent study conducted in South Australia (Winn, 2005). Its findings are compared with those of three other Australian studies conducted over the past several decades (Australian Federation of Adult Deaf Societies, 1973; Deaf Society of New South Wales, 1998; Hyde, 1988). Compared to the rest of the community, deaf adults have had and continue to have higher unemployment rates, are underemployed in terms of the range of occupations, and typically earn less than the general population in similar occupations. The most recent study (Winn, 2005) provides evidence that Australian deaf adults have poor employment outcomes despite access to higher education and legislation prohibiting discrimination. That employment outcomes have not altered dramatically since earlier studies suggests that positive programs are required to address the general community's attitude about deafness as a disability.