How Did Access to Job Services Affect Youth with Disabilities?

How Did Access to Job Services Affect Youth with Disabilities?

Published: May 21, 2024
Publisher: Mathematica
Associated Project

Retirement and Disability Research Consortium

Time frame: 2018-2023

Prepared for:

Social Security Administration


This brief summarizes findings from a study examining how transition-age youth with disabilities receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) may have been affected by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and access to pre-employment transition services (pre-ETS). Using data from the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Rehabilitation Services Administration for 2010 to 2021, we show that after WIOA’s passage, more youth applied to vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies, signed individualized plans for employment, and had higher annual earnings. In states where students had more access to pre-ETS, youth receiving SSI had higher rates for each of the three outcomes (signed individualized plans for employment, had any earnings, and use of Section 301) than in states where students had less access. The passage of WIOA and access to pre-ETS likely contributed to a higher involvement with VR and may be associated with better employment outcomes.

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