News and events History of Disability 1921 - 1945 A brief history of disability in NI. 1921 to 1945 1821: legislation passed for ‘District Lunatic Asylums’ (still in place in Northern Ireland comes into being). 1932: Mental Health Act (NI) passed into law. 1930’s: Nazis forcibly sterilise 360,000 disabled people. 1939 – 1941: Nazis systematically murder some 250,000 disabled people under their Action T4 ‘purity programme’. 1944: Disabled Persons (Employment) Act provides the first definition of a disabled person (rather than an impairment specific definition). 1945: 300,000 armed service personnel and civilians in the UK acquired disabilities arising from World War 2.