Region: Asia

Disability Definition

A disabled person is defined as one who suffers from abnormalities of loss of a certain organ or function, psychologically or physiologically, or in anatomical structure and has lost wholly or in part the ability to perform an activity in the way considered normal. The term disabled persons refers to those with visual, hearing, speech or physical disabilities, intellectual disabilities, psychiatric disabilities, multiple disabilities and/or other disabilities.


The Law on the Protection of Disabled Persons (enacted in 1991 and amended in 2008) is of significant importance to safeguard the rights of people with disabilities. It addresses issues of rehabilitation, education, employment, cultural life, welfare, access, and legal liability, etc. Access the law here:

The Employment Regulation and the Education Regulation for people with disabilities were adopted in 2007 and in 1994 respectively to promote equality, participation and sharing, as well as to prohibit discrimination. Ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities in 2008.

Employer Legal Requirements

The Government has established a quota system that requires all public and private employers to reserve no less than 1.5% of job opportunities for persons with disabilities, in accordance with specific regulations established by local provincial governments.Those who fail to meet the required quota must pay a fee to the Disabled Persons Employment Security Fund, which in turn supports vocational training and job-placement services for people with disabilities. The rate varies by location. Beijing – 1.7%, Shanghai – 1.6%, Shenzhen – 0.5%
-A disabled employee needs to provide a Certificate of Disability issued by the government (normally, the China Disabled Persons’ Federation) to verify their physical condition, so self-identification will not suffice in China.
-Companies must make an annual declaration regarding the employment status of disabled employees. Certificates of Disability issued by the government should be submitted to verify the identity and disability status of the disabled employees. Additionally, the enterprise should also provide the record of social insurance contribution of the previous year as well as the payroll slips of the disabled employees to prove the employment relationship between the company and the disabled employees.
-The taxation authorities and disabled peoples organizations are involved in the process of monitoring. Through initiatives such as tax incentives and financial, technical and other resource assistance, the Government supports welfare enterprises that recruit employees with disabilities and encourages people with disabilities to engage in self-employment. Many employers prefer to pay the penalty if caught, rather than hire the legally required number of workers with disabilities. Multinationals have been hardest hit by these measures, as penalties are calculated based on the average salary within their global business rather than an average local salary, which is usually much lower.

For example, in Beijing, the amount should be calculated in accordance with the formula below: Disabled persons employment protection fund = (the total number of employees of the employer * 1.7% – the number of the disabled employees of the employer) * average yearly wages of the previous year of the employer. In Shanghai, the formula used is: Disabled persons employment protection fund = (1.6% – the rate of the disabled employees of the employer) * total amount of contribution basis of social insurance of the employer of the previous year If the employer fails to make the payment, a rectification order will be issued to the employer requiring the employer to make the payment within a certain period of time, and if the order is not complied with within the time period specified, the employer will be required to pay a penalty equal to 0.5% of the amount overdue each day starting from the expiration date stated on the rectification order.

Request Disability Information Status during Application stage:
-After offer has been made or After employment commences? Yes, assuming employee has been given notice of the data collection in accordance with PRC laws
-After offer has been made? Same as above
-After employment commences? Same as above

Accessibility Requirements

In 2007, regulations and administrative decrees on accessibility were issued by 6 provinces, 76cities and 350 counties. ICT and reasonable accommodation requirements exist in China. Learn more about accessibility requirements at the WAI website.

IBM has supported the work of CDPF with web accessibility training to help increase competencies.

Cultural Norms

Affected by stereotypes, disabled persons are facing bias and discrimination in the society.

The gap of living condition between disabled persons and others is growing bigger. Poverty remains as a key obstacle in the development of disabled persons. People with disabilities lack of opportunities to access to employment, education, vocation training, and social security.

Business Practices/Examples

Additional content coming soon.


In 2006, the total population of people with disabilities reached 82.96 million, or 6.34% of the total Chinese population. This number grew to approximately 85 million in 2018.

Only 9m of the country’s estimated 85m disabled citizens (approximately 6.5 per cent of the country’s population) are employed, according to the China Disabled Persons’ Federation (CDPF), a state organisation. (May 2018 report)

The disabled population in urban areas accounted for 20.71 million, or 24.96%; the disabled population in rural areas 62.25 million, or 75.04%.

In 2007, there were 3127 employment service agencies at different levels helping 300,000 people with disabilities annually. These agencies have received financial support from the government and local communities, and provided services ranging from practical job-oriented vocational training to employment matching and consultation for people with disabilities seeking jobs.

“ILO China work: “”Project on Promoting the Employability and Employment of People with Disabilities through Effective Legislation”” and published the “”Anthology of Excellence Enterprises Cases on Promotion of Employment for People with Disabilities””

Employment assistance month is a national campaign that lasts from early January to mid-February.

Supplier Diversity

Certification is in place for women-owned business enterprises (WeConnect).

The WeConnect (woman-owned business certifier) August 2018 China Summit was an opportunity for WEConnect International corporate members, such as Accenture, Cummins, Dell, ExxonMobil, IBM, Intel Corp, J&J, Marriott International, MSD/Merck, SAP/Ariba, Walmart and Wyndham Destinations to share their insights on how diverse-owned businesses in Greater China can utilize supplier diversity and inclusion initiatives for greater market access. The Summit included a matchmaking session and awards ceremony.

Part of the Out and Equal Global Network

Talent Sourcing Resources

China Disabled Persons’ Federation (CDPF) The CDPF, established in 1988, is a unified organization of/for the 83 million persons with various categories of disabilities in China. It has a nationwide umbrella network reaching every part of China with about 90,000 fulltime workers and 400,000 part-time workers. The CDPF performs three functions:

represent interests of people with disabilities in China and help protect their legitimate rights;
provide comprehensive and effective services to disabled people; and
commissioned by the Chinese government to supervise affairs relating to people with disabilities in China.
The CDPF is committed to promote the humanitarianism, the human rights of people with disabilities, and the integration of people with disabilities in all aspects. Learn more and contact information.

Additional Resources

The State Council Working Committee on Disabilities has been established to steer and coordinate the disability work. It is composed of 36 ministries and social groups.

One Plus One Disabled Persons’ Cultural Development Center – Partners include China Blind Persons’ Association and local Blind Persons’ Associations, Beijing Disabled Persons’ Federation and other local Disabled Persons’ Federations, China National Radio, Harvard Law School.


ILO Facts on People with Disabilities in China

May 9, 2018 Article: Chinese employers choose fines over meeting disability quotas


Easy Inclusion – partners with stakeholders to provide education and leadership programs for investigating and solving social problems such as removing the barriers people with disabilities face in the job market

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