Poverty and people with disabilities a report to the legislative commission to end poverty by 2020
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Poverty and People with Disabilities A Report to the Legislative Commission to End Poverty by 2020 Joan Willshire Executive Director Minnesota State Council on Disability in conjunction with the Governors Council on Developmental Disabilities People with disabilities in poverty

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Poverty and people with disabilities a report to the legislative commission to end poverty by 2020 l.jpg

Poverty and People with Disabilities A Report to the Legislative Commission to End Poverty by 2020

Joan Willshire

Executive Director

Minnesota State Council on Disability in conjunction with the Governors Council on Developmental Disabilities


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People with disabilities in poverty

  • Disability statistics

  • Characteristics of people with disabilities living in poverty

  • People with disabilities telling their story


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Definitionof Disability

An individual with a disability is a person who:

  • Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities

    (walking, breathing, caring for oneself);

  • Has a record of such an impairment; or

  • Is regarded as having such an impairment.

    Source:Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.


General statistics l.jpg
General Statistics

  • 557,000 Minnesotans (12%) reported having at least one type of disability, 6% of Minnesotans reported two or more types of disabilities

  • 17.4% of Minnesotans with a disability live in poverty, while only 7.7% of non-disabled Minnesotans live below the poverty level

  • Data does not include people living in group housing, so people with disabilities are underrepresented in these statistics

    Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2005 American Community Survey


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Poverty Rate According to Disability Type (MN)

Source: Disability Status Report: Employment and Disability Institute, Cornell Univ. 2005


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General Statistics continued

  • In Minnesota in 2001, SSI benefits were only 17.6% of the median one-person income. Simply put, a person with a disability who lives off of ONLY SSI benefits will be earning only 17.6% of what the median one-income Minnesotan earns

  • The average monthly SSI benefit in MN in 2000 was $593 or $3.42 an hour

    Source: Priced out in 2000: the Crisis Continues Report


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Transportation in the U.S.

  • Almost 15 million people in the U.S. have difficulties getting the transportation they need. Of these, nearly 6 million (or 40%) are people with disabilities

  • More than 3.5 million people in the U.S. never leave their homes. Of these, 1.9 million (or 54%) are people with disabilities

  • Approximately 560,000 disabled people do not leave their home specifically because they cannot access the transportation they need

    Source: U.S. Bureau of Transportation, April 2003


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“Transportation is not a problem unless you want to go somewhere.”

  • The most prominent difficulty in traveling outside the home is a lack of a personal vehicle. Others included public transportation availability or cost, physical problems that make using transportation difficult, and personal preferences

  • People with disabilities may not be able to afford an automobile or the necessary modifications to make a vehicle functional, but public transit doesn’t provide comprehensive enough service


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Public Transportation in MN somewhere.”

  • There are 87 counties in Minnesota, only 66 of them have county-wide public transportation service available

  • 7 counties in Minnesota do not have public transportation which means accessible, non-emergency transportation is not available for seniors or people with disabilities

    (Clearwater, Kanabec, Kittson, Pine, Todd, Waseca and Wilkin)

    Source: Minnesota Department of Transportation, April 2007.


Housing l.jpg
Housing somewhere.”

  • In 2000, people with disabilities were the low-income group with the highest levels of unmet need for housing assistance

  • In 2000, no housing market in the country existed where a person with a disability receiving SSI benefits could afford to rent a modest efficiency or one-bedroom apartment


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Housing somewhere.”

  • A Minnesotan with a disability earning SSI would have to spend 74% of their SSI benefit to afford an efficiency apartment and nearly 82% of their SSI benefit for a 1-bedroom apartment. In the Minneapolis/ St. Paul area, one would need to spend 72% of the SSI benefit for an efficiency and almost 93% of the benefit for a one bedroom.

  • “People with disabilities can’t save for bigger purchases; there are too many asset limits.”

    Source: Priced Out in 2000: The Crisis Continues


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Health Care somewhere.”

  • Medicare does not cover many needed services for people with disabilities such as: long-term care, dental care, hearing aids and foot care

  • 22.4 million (or 40%) of people with disabilities experience at least one secondary condition per year

  • 60% of secondary conditions could be prevented if all people with disabilities participated in health promotion programs – this would save $40 billion per year

  • In 2005, Medicare Part D was implemented, forcing some populations to pay a monthly premium (unless dually eligible), adding yet another expense for people with disabilities

    Source: Promoting Better Health for Minnesotans with Disabilities, MDH, 2007



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Employment somewhere.”

  • In 2005 the employment rate for Minnesotans with disabilities aged 21-64 was 44.9%. Only 26% work full-time. (Compare this to 83.5% for Minnesotans without disabilities and 59% work full-time. )

  • In 2005 the percentage of Minnesotans with disabilities aged 18-64 that were looking for work was 8.8% (Compare this to 3.9% for Minnesotans without disabilities.)

    Source: Disability Status Report: Employment and Disability Institute, Cornell Univ. 2005


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Summary somewhere.”

  • In many instances, reliance on government benefits sentence people with disabilities to a lifetime of poverty

  • Many systematic barriers remain, especially in the areas of housing, transportation, health care and employment, which all impact why people live in poverty.


For more information contact l.jpg

Mn State Council on Disability somewhere.”

121 E. 7th Place, Suite 107, St Paul MN 55101

www.disability.state.mn.us

Governors Council on Developmental Disabilities

370 Centennial Office Building, 658 Cedar Street, St Paul MN 55155

www.mnddc.org

For more information contact:


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