Research & Analysis by Yonatan Ben-Shalom
This article summarizes findings from selected research conducted under the Social Security Administration's (SSA's) Disability Research Consortium (DRC) at the Mathematica Center for Studying Disability Policy. Mathematica researchers, often in collaboration with SSA and other research institutions, have conducted studies addressing five broad topic areas. Those topics are Social Security Disability Insurance applicants and their potential ability to remain in the labor force; factors affecting participation in the federal disability programs; the characteristics, well-being, and employment of disability program participants; special populations of people with disabilities; and access to health insurance for people with disabilities. The studies highlight how the DRC has supported a broad range of rigorous, policy-relevant research and made important contributions to the body of knowledge on those topics.
A significant share of individuals who are first awarded Social Security benefits because of a disability is aged younger than 40. Using administrative data on young adults aged 18–39 who were first awarded benefits from 1996 through 2007, the authors produce descriptive statistics on beneficiary characteristics at award, prior Supplemental Security Income program participation status, and 5-year employment outcomes. The authors track cross-cohort changes over the study period and examine potential contributing factors.
Long-Term Work Activity and Use of Employment Supports Among New Supplemental Security Income Recipients
Long-term cumulative statistics on the employment activities of Supplemental Security Income recipients offer a different perspective than the Social Security Administration's published statistics, which are based on monthly or annual data, and have important policy implications.