Supplemental Security Income - An Underused Resource For Disabled TANF Recipients in Illinois
This paper reviews the literature that assesses the incidence of severe impairments among parents and children receiving AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children) and TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families), and projects that analysis to estimate the number of persons eligible for, but not receiving SSI (Supplemental Security Income) in the Illinois TANF case load.
The paper also reviews 1999 levels of investment in screening for eligibility and pursuing SSI benefits for TANF recipients, and articulates a rationale for further investment. Prior research supports an estimate that between 8-12,000 children, and 4-18,000 parents in the Illinois TANF case load are SSI eligible but not enrolled. This paper describes strategies and costs necessary to promote full enrolment of SSI eligible TANF recipients.
Finally, the paper summarizes fiscal incentives supporting further investment in screening and advocacy to secure SSI benefits for TANF recipients. Additional investment will produce substantially greater savings in TANF cash assistance, and will also strengthen family economic security. For TANF families that secure SSI benefits for a disabled child, the parent will be better able to obtain employment.
A report was published in the Journal of Poverty Law and Policy, Nov.-Dec. 1999, entitled "The Earned Income Tax Credit: Eligible Families at Risk of Losing Benefits."
- M. O'Connor, CURL Community Fellow