Indiana University SPEA Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy University of Pennsylvania AIR American University

Panel Paper: The Long Term Employment Outcomes of Transition-Age Supplemental Security Income Recipients Who Have Participated in the Vocational Rehabilitation Program

Saturday, November 14, 2015 : 8:50 AM
Orchid A (Hyatt Regency Miami)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Hugh Berry, Leslie Caplan and Jocelyn Logan-Friend, U.S. Department of Education
The purpose of this study is to examine the characteristics and long term employment outcomes of transition-age Supplemental Security Income (SSI) beneficiaries who have participated in the Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program.  More specifically, the outcomes of SSI workers utilizing the 1619(b) work incentive will be compared with selected SSI and VR subpopulations for up to 10 years after exiting the VR program.  Section 1619(b) of the Social Security Act provides continued Medicaid coverage for SSI participants when earnings are substantial enough to reduce cash benefit payments to zero.  From a disability policy perspective, the 1619(b) work incentive is important because participants demonstrating work may, at some point, leave the SSI program altogether, and their potential for economic self-sufficiency is underscored by expanded health care availability through the Affordable Care Act.  Individual-level data from the Social Security Administration and the Rehabilitation Services Administration were analyzed to describe and explain demographic, service, education, and other factors that influence employment outcomes.  Findings will be discussed in the context of emerging disability and health care policy developments for individuals with disabilities.