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According to the 2012 Canadian Survey on Disability (CSD), 3,775,900 (13.7%) Canadians aged 15 years and older reported some type of disability, and 160,500 (0.6% of Canadian adults) were identified as having a developmental disability (Table 1). It is important to note, however, that this refers only to the population living in private households and does not include those living in institutions. The most prevalent underlying developmental conditions reported on the survey were autism, cerebral palsy, and Down syndrome.

Multiple Disabilities


Developmental disability frequently co-occurred with other types of disability: 94.0% of those with a developmental disability also reported at least one other type of disability in 2012.

Learning and mental health-related disabilities were common among young adults with a developmental disability; while among seniors, the highest rate of co-occurrence was with a physical disability

Educational aids and services


Over half (62.2%) of adults aged 15 and older with a developmental disability currently attending or who had recently attended school required an education aid or service. The majority (77.0%) reported that all their needs for an aid or service had been met; 20.1% reported that some needs had been met; and 2.8% reported that none of their needs had been met.​

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