Social Security Administration Celebrates the 10th Anniversary of the Ticket to Work Program with the Launch of “Choose Work” Web Site
The Social Security Administration (SSA) and CESSI, the Program Manager for Recruitment and Outreach for the Ticket to Work (Ticket) program, are pleased to announce the launch of the new Choose Work web site (www.choosework.net) for people with disabilities receiving Social Security disability benefits in celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the enactment of the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act (Ticket Act).
In 1999, Congress passed the landmark Ticket Act to expand choice and provide improved services and supports to beneficiaries with disabilities who decided to Choose Work. SSA has worked continuously to improve the Ticket program over the past decade and the program has come a long way since the first Ticket was issued in 2002.
Based on input SSA received from beneficiaries, Employment Networks and the disability community, regulatory improvements were made to the Ticket program in July 2008 and those changes have resulted in significant program growth and the emergence of some very encouraging trends:
- Increased Ticket Assignments: Over 270,000 beneficiaries are using their Ticket to get help finding a job. That is up 72% from the beginning of 2007.
- More Beneficiaries Are Working: In 2008, 96,993 beneficiaries had their Ticket in use and were working. That is up from 59,443 in 2007, a 63% increase. Many of these beneficiaries are achieving significant levels of self sufficiency and some have successfully transitioned off SSA benefits.
And these are just a few of the positive trends that have emerged since the new regulations were implemented. Stay tuned in the new year for a full report on the impact of the regulatory changes.
SSA is launching this web site to renew Congress’ challenge to willing SSI and SSDI beneficiaries to “Choose Work” by participating in the Ticket to Work program and using the other SSA Work Incentives. For the first time, those unfamiliar with the program can view short, informative videos; hear powerful stories told by people just like themselves whose circumstances have led them to explore the Ticket and other Work Incentives; experience a Work Incentive Seminar Event; find local resources and other helpful information in one interactive location online.
Stop by www.choosework.net and hear directly from some of the people with disabilities the Ticket program has helped to Choose Earnings, Choose Fulfillment and Choose Work.
Ticket to Work is a voluntary employment program for people with disabilities administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA). The Ticket program offers people receiving Social Security disability benefits age 18 through 64 expanded opportunities to obtain the services and supports that they need to work and to achieve their employment goals. SSA does this by paying approved service providers, referred to as “Employment Networks” or “ENs”, for assisting beneficiaries to reach designated Milestones and Outcomes associated with achieving self-supporting employment. An EN can be any agency or organization that provides or is equipped to provide employment- related services and supports to individuals who have disabilities.