Beneficiary Participation in Ticket to Work
The authors examine the participation of SSA disability beneficiaries in the TTW program through December 2004. On an absolute scale, participation is very low, and perhaps much lower than many had hoped. Participation is not low relative to the historical rate for program exits due to work, however, and certain groups of beneficiaries participate at higher rates than others. A large majority of participants assign their Tickets to state vocational rehabilitation agencies (SVRAs), predominantly under the traditional, cost-reimbursement payment system. Most SVRA administrators indicate that they have not made major changes to the way they serve their beneficiary clients as a result of TTW. These findings suggest that, through December 2004, TTW does not represent a significant departure from the past. Participants with Tickets assigned to Employment Networks (ENs) are substantially more likely than those with Tickets assigned to SVRAs to earn at a level that will lead to program exit. This finding likely reflects the strong incentives that ENs have to serve only those with a high likelihood of exiting the rolls, but might also reflect greater focus on achievement of high earnings.
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