(NAPSI)—As you may have discovered, looking for work is not a one-size-fits-all journey. That’s why the Ticket to Work (Ticket) program, Social Security’s national employment-related program, uses a customized approach to help people with disabilities find meaningful work that leads to financial independence.
How It Works
The Ticket program supports career development for people ages 18 through 64 who get Social Security disability benefits (SSI or SSDI) and want to work. The individualization begins when a beneficiary and a service provider agree to work together. The service provider and beneficiary work one on one to develop an Individual Work Plan (IWP), a detailed road map that identifies employment goals based on where the individual is on the path to work. This process, as well as other services, can be done either in person or virtually. The IWP also includes services that the participants will need to prepare for jobs tailored to their capabilities and strengths.
Different types of service providers focus on different types of services:
Employment Networks (EN) are private or public organizations that can help with career counseling and assistance with job placement, including advising about how benefits will be affected by work. Some ENs provide services only to their local community, while others work across one or more states or even nationwide.
State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) agencies provide training to help people develop a variety of new skills or strengthen current ones to help people with disabilities return to work, enter a new line of work or enter the workforce for the first time.
Work Incentives Planning & Assistance (WIPA) organizations provide free benefits counseling to help beneficiaries make informed choices about work. These groups provide in-depth counseling about working and the effect that earning money will have on benefits.
The Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS) program provides legal support, advocacy and information to help beneficiaries resolve disability- and employment-related concerns.
To get started and find further information about the Ticket program, call the Ticket to Work Help Line at 1 (866) 968-7842 or 1 (866) 833-2967 (TTY) Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET or visit the Choose Work website at https://choosework.ssa.gov.