By Featured Blogger Bob Williams, Associate Commissioner for the Social Security Administration’s Office of Employment Support Programs
Hello, I am Bob Williams, the Associate Commissioner for employment support at the Social Security Administration. We run the Ticket to Work program to assist individuals ages 18 through 64 who are receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) who choose to do so to become employed and self-sufficient.
I know firsthand that people with significant disabilities face complex, multiple barriers to working, especially in today's tough economy. I also know however, that going to work, pursuing a career, and earning a decent living is a viable possibility for some people that receive SSDI or SSI benefits. This is where the Ticket to Work program comes in. The Ticket program is strictly voluntary. It offers someone on SSDI or SSI like you the choices, training, opportunities, and support you need to go to work and gain greater financial independence. Many who use the Ticket start off by working part time, attending college, or participating in other training before attempting to work full time. However, it is important to note that individuals who eventually earn their way off cash benefits by being employed can often retain their Medicare or Medicaid coverage as well as restart cash benefits quickly if they find that they can no longer work. The Ticket program is not right for everyone, but if you want to try to explore how work may work for you, I strongly urge you to find out more and call 1-866-968-7842 or 1-866-833-2967 (TTY/TDD) or visit www.socialsecurity.gov/work. Do it today. Your life and future can be better!