Region: Asia

Disability Definition

Disability means lacking one or more physical powers, such as the ability to walk or to coordinate one’s movements, as from the effects of a disease or accident, or through mental impairment.

Pakistan also follows the CRPD’s definition, “persons with disabilities include those who have long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments which in interaction with various barriers may hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.”


The legal framework in Pakistan is weak as far as protecting the rights of persons with disabilities is concerned. There is only one law especially targeted at persons with disabilities, the Disabled Persons (Employment and Rehabilitation) Ordinance 1981. It specifies that employers with 100 workers or more must ensure that at least 2% of their total workforce consists of persons with disabilities, or pay a levy. Unfortunately, the monitoring and implementation of this law has been weak.


Under the Disabled Persons Ordinance, the National Council for the Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons (NCRDP) the Provincial CRDP have been established with the objective to ensure and enhance the work of employment, welfare and rehabilitation of persons with disabilities.


During the implementation of the ‘National Policy for Persons with Disabilities, 2002’, some structural flaws were identified. Therefore, after four years a ‘National Plan of Action for Persons with Disabilities,’ was introduced in 2006.


The new Disability Rights Act, approved on 10 January 2022, provides a comprehensive legal framework to protect and promote the rights of people with disabilities in Pakistan.


Employer Legal Requirements

Originally, under the Disabled Persons (Employment and Rehabilitation) Ordinance, it is required that 2% of the total number of persons employed by an establishment at any time shall be “disabled persons”.

In 2018, The Sindh Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities Act increased the employment quota from 2% to 5%.

Accessibility Requirements

Pakistan doesn’t have any specific workplace accessibility laws in place.
The Constitution of Pakistan encourages the employers to make “provision for securing just and humane conditions of work, ensuring that children and women are not employed in vocations unsuited to their age or sex, and for maternity benefits for women in employment.”
The CRPD states that these provisions are applicable in the context of persons with disabilities.

Cultural Norms

The culture around disability in Pakistan is one characterized by pity.


Disability is a stigma in Pakistan, and culture norms are a hindrance to inclusion. A person with a disability may be perceived as suffering from an affliction from God. The family can often retreat into a state of shame, fearing that they have been punished for some misdeed or placed in adversity as a test of their faith. The stigma is so potent that families can resort to hiding their children.


Persons with disabilities are still referred to in derogatory terms such as “crippled” and “mentally retarded”.


For women, there is double discrimination, it could be said that the only thing tougher than being a girl in Pakistan is being a girl with a disability in Pakistan. They have limited access to education, employment and face challenges in finding a life partner (Moving from marjins: British Council 2014).


Persons with disabilities are seen sympathetically, in need of medical help or charity, instead of worthy of empowerment.


Business Practices/Examples

Additional content coming soon.


There are no reliable statistics on disability in Pakistan.

Estimates vary a lot: 0.48% (national census 2017), 6.2% ((UNDP) up to 14% (the economist 2014).

Supplier Diversity

Additional content coming soon.

Talent Sourcing Resources

Additional content coming soon.

Additional Resources

Network of Organizations Working with People with Disabilities, Pakistan – Their mission is to “promote the creation of an inclusive society which values and upholds the rights of people with disabilities through sustainable endeavors and a holistic approach driven by clear social objectives.”

Pakistan Disabled Foundation – Pakistan Disabled Foundation is an organization of the crossed disabilities, working actively in all walks of life to the maximum possible extent.


The Aging and Disability Task Force (ADTF) under the leadership of HelpAge and Humainity inclusion is quite active.

Go to Top