Edinburgh Research Explorer

Employment experiences and outcomes of young people in Scotland who are deaf or hard of hearing: Intersections of deafness and social class

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDisabled People, Work and Welfare
Subtitle of host publicationIs Employment Really the Answer?
PublisherPolicy Press
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 2015


This chapter focuses on the influence of social class on the employment outcomes of young people who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) in Scotland. It draws on semi-structured interviews with young people aged 18-24 who are DHH, and secondary analyses of administrative and survey data. It was found that, in line with the mainstream population, social class is strongly associated with qualifications and employment outcomes. The interviews revealed that all young people encountered difficulties in securing and maintaining employment. However, those from less advantaged social backgrounds were more likely to encounter overt discriminatory attitudes, had limited work experience and lacked the social resources which enabled their middle-class peers to overcome systemic barriers in the labour market. This research suggests that if the life chances of deaf young people are to be improved, both social class and deafness need to be taken into consideration by policy makers and practitioners.

    Research areas

  • Social class, Disability, Deafness, Qualifications, Employment

ID: 16161208