Working Abroad With a Disability, Pros and Cons

    Proper planning and acquiring the necessary information is key

    Must Read

    Like you, we are tired of corporate media that is politically driven and one sided. So we decided to focus on news that’s important to people. We’re Creating a Conscious alternative news network that we feel the world needs and we need your help! We can’t do this without you! Support news and media that matters and that can help change our world!

    Yes, it is really possible to work abroad with a disability, and yes, there are obstacles whether the disability is visible or not. However, these obstacles do not endanger the expatriation plan, far from it. Here are some practical tips for moving abroad with a disability.

    Expats with Disabilities: Overcoming Common Misconceptions

    This is by far the most significant obstacle faced by people with disabilities. The association of disability with inactivity remains all too common, supported by authentic statistics. For example, in France, only “38% of people with recognized disabilities” were employed in 2022, which is half the rate of the general population, according to the Directorate of Research, Studies and Statistics (DARES) of France. In the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 21.3% of people with disabilities were employed in 2022, compared to 65.4% of those without disabilities.Although the gap remains significant, the employment rate for people with disabilities has increased slightly (from 19.1% in 2021).

    Organizations that support workers with disabilities in their efforts to move abroad emphasize these figures to highlight that not only working with a disability, but also expatriation is feasible. They maintain an optimistic vision without ignoring real challenges. The significant employment gap between those with and without disabilities, evident in many countries, shows that accessing the labor market is more difficult for those with disabilities.It is more difficult, but not impossible. This is the continuous fight of associations and organizations that support the integration of people with disabilities. For example, the European mobility program Erasmus+ provides support to help expats with disabilities.

    Building your professional project

    Proper planning is key, and this advice is given to all potential expats, regardless of whether or not they have a disability. The importance of preparation is further emphasized for those with disabilities. Consider the circumstances of moving abroad; Whether it involves an international transfer (with an expatriation contract or not), be sure to negotiate the contract carefully with the company. The contract usually includes support for settling in a foreign country.

    When it comes to disability, many regions of the world still need to make progress in terms of accessibility, which remains one of the main obstacles for future workers with disabilities. It is essential to choose your host city considering these practical parameters. Depending on the disability, you should avoid moving to areas with poor transportation services (and accessible transportation), as well as regions where access to health care is difficult (few doctors, specialists, hard-to-find medications, complicated care, etc.)

    The professional project covers all practical aspects of life. It is also crucial to ensure with the employer (if there is already an employment contract) that the company has considered the nature of the disability and will adapt the workplace and working conditions accordingly. A review of the host country’s disability legislation will confirm the country’s progress (or lack thereof) in this area, and the government’s commitment to upholding and protecting the rights of people with disabilities.

    Seek information and support

    Although there are resources for people with disabilities, they are still little known. This includes Erasmus+, which is expanding its communication to reach more people with disabilities. Too many potential expats abandon their projects without realizing they were feasible. Erasmus+ offers support not only financially, but also by guiding future expatriates in the development of their professional projects abroad.

    At the state level, several other structures support workers with disabilities. These organizations advocate for better inclusion of people with disabilities in the labor market and may have an international branch, such as France Travail in France, or Canada’s government disability self-declaration tool, which allows online access to job offers from the federal public service reserved for people with disabilities. In New Zealand, the Ministry of Disabled People offers resources for support and finding employment.

    More tips for working abroad with a disability

    Be cautious with allowances: those provided in your country of residence will be interrupted if you move to a foreign country. For example, French people have to give up their disabled adult allowance (AAH) when moving abroad unless they are going to continue studies, vocational training or learn a language abroad.When in a foreign country, expats should apply through their consulate’s social service, which assesses the severity of the disability to decide on help.

    Getting feedback from people with disabilities living in the host country is invaluable. Connecting with them provides information about practical life in that country. Even if these expats don’t have the same disability, they can provide a different perspective, highlighting aspects that those without disabilities might not notice. They can also serve as role models for the prospective expatriate, confirming that moving abroad with a disability is indeed possible.

    Resonance Costa Rica
    At Resonance, we aspire to live in harmony with the natural world as a reflection of our gratitude for life. Visit and subscribe at Resonance Costa Rica Youtube Channel
    - Advertisement -


    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here

    Subscribe to our newsletter

    Get all the latest news, events, offers and special announcements.

    Latest News

    Do You Want to Know the Officials Who Govern Your Local Community in Costa Rica?

    At the municipal level in Costa Rica, each person has between 23 and 35 local authorities.The number sounds a...

    More Articles Like This

    Language »