Supporting Employment for Transition-Age Youth with Disabilities: ABLE and SSA Work Incentives

Supporting Employment for Transition-Age Youth with Disabilities: ABLE and SSA Work Incentives


Well, good afternoon or good morning, everyone.
Depending where you are joining us today. My name is Miranda Kennedy and I’m the director
of the ABLE National Resource Center and I would like to thank all of you for joining
us today for our presentation on supporting employment for transition‑age youth with
disabilities. How ABLE accounts and work incentives can help. Our presentation today is made possible
by the sponsors of the ABLE National Resource Center on our grant and our grant through
prudential so we want to thank them as well. Now before we go any further I would like
to hand things over to my colleague who will walk us through the logistics of our web inner
with a few brief slides.>>Hi, everyone. I’m going to go over a few
things to help make the webinar run smoothly for you. Listening to the webinar. The audio
for today’s meeting can be accessed using computer audio or by calling in by your phone
if you select computer audio, please make sure your speakers are turned on and your
head phones are plugged in. If you do not have sound capabilities on your computer or
prefer to listen by phone, please dial 929‑205‑6099 and the meeting code is in‑838‑793 ‑‑
is 234‑838‑793.>>Captioning. The
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question mark event equals NDI. Please use the Q&A box to submit any questions
you have during the webinar. We will try to answer all questions. If your question is
not answered during the webinar or you are listening by phone and not logged in, please
visit ablenrc.org. Technical assistance. If you experience any
technical difficulties during the webinar, please use the chat box to send a message
to the NDI host or you may e‑mail mredden @ndi‑inc.org. Please note this webinar is
being recorded and the materials will be placed on the ABLE National Resource Center website,
along with all of our other ABLE webinars at ablenrc.org/resources/webinars. And with that I will turn it back over to
Miranda.>>Thank you so much, Maggie. Well, let’s
go ahead and talk about our objectives for today’s presentation and also first of all
I want to note that we do have our PowerPoint slides link to them are in the chat box. If
you didn’t download them as you came in today go ahead and make sure you have a copy of
that because one of the things we do here is we make sure we actually break a lot of
PowerPoint rules. So most of what you need to know will be on the slides themselves.
You can take it away as a handout and you might want to take some notes but you shouldn’t
have to take too many because all of the information we put all of our cards on the table because
we want to make sure you have it and can walk away with it. So please make a note to do
that. And as we get started here, let’s talk about the objectives for today’s presentation. Our goal really here is to share with all
of you transition age youth and the family and service providers who support and serve
young people with disabilities, a primer on how ABLE accounts and SSA and work incentives
can be used together and are individually. We will share strategies and promising practices
as well as stories about real life transition aged youth. In addition, we will be introducing
you to information and resources to help make informed decisions about employment and financial
planning moving forward. And really, the thing to keep in mind is all of this information
is for you to consider, to do some further research because we could teach entire college
courses on these topics. This is an introduction, a primer. There will be additional research
that will be helpful so you can move forward and incorporate as appropriate into your own
individualized planning around employment in order it achieve financial goals and increase
financial well being. Now let’s go to the next slide because for those of you who are
joining us for the first time on one of our ABLE National Resource Center webinars I would
like to take a minute to share with you who we are and what we do at the ABLE National
Resource Center. The ABLE National Resource Center or ABLE
nrc is the leading comprehensive source of objective independent information about federal
and state related ABLE programs and activities including guidance on tax advantaged ABLE
savings accounts. Our mission is to educate, promote and support the positive impact ABLE
can make on the lives of millions of Americans with disabilities and their families. Our
pioneering work in this area and subject matter expertise make us the foremost authority on
topics related to the achieving a better life experience or ABLE Act. ABLE accounts, state
ABLE programs, ABLE related policy developments and comprehensive integration of ABLE and
financial capability strategies for people with disabilities into public service delivery
systems. Our website is ablenrc.org. If you haven’t visited that I encourage you to do
so. Let’s go to the next slide where I want to share with you today’s presentation will
be a deep dive into the topic of employment for transition age youth and ABLE accounts
and work incentives can support that. For those who want to learn more about the road
map to enrollment for ABLE and how ABLE can increase financial well being and independence,
we have links available at our website. This is a more broad level information. It’s really
foundational related to ABLE and these road maps provide at each point there is two road
maps with five steps in each road map and each point on the road map provides a short
video as well as materials. So the first road map, the road map to enrollment covers what
is ABLE. Who is eligible. How can funds be used and how do I open an account and how
do I manage my account that information will be covered in the road map to enrollment off
of our website. And those first ‑‑ they get you to the point of opening an ABLE account.
The next road map is once you opened your ABLE account how do you make the most out
of it? This includes information and topics, studying my financial goals. Building a circle
of support. Making smart financial decisions, monitoring my ABLE account and celebrating
being ABLE. We will begin covering some of this information
on today’s webinar in our primer but you can go deeper and do a deeper dive using these
two road maps which will be helpful for you in case this was early days for you exploring
ABLE. I wanted to share this up front to know that we will have experts joining us in our
chat and our Q&A responding to your questions as they come this and we thank them for being
with us today, too. Let’s go ahead and go to the next slide and talk about our partners
from the American dream employment network who we are grateful they are joining us here
today providing their expertise through that lens on SSA work incentives and how these
incentives can help. Is what the American dream employment net
work or ADEN. An approved employment network under Social Security’s ticket to work program.
ADEN an administrative EN is a ‑‑ of service providers and employers working together to
create a path for individuals with disability who are currently receiving Social Security
disability benefits and want to return to or begin working for the first time. ADEN
focuses on building a network of employer partners who are interested in diversifying
their work force by hiring qualified ADEN participants. ADEN can serve as the preferred
resource to federal contractors and employers looking for potential job accounts who will
be provided with ongoing employment support. And ADEN is or partner project under the national
disable institute which oversees both the ABLE national resource center and the American
dream employment network. So let’s go ahead and take a look at who our
facilitators and presenters are here today. There I am. I’m ‑‑ this is Miranda Kennedy.
Who you are hearing from. I’m the director of the ABLE National Resource Center. I’m
going to be joined today and I will be facilitating and presenting here and there but I’m joined
today by great topic experts of Laurie and Kevin Nickerson. Laurie is a manager over
financial empowerment at the national disability institute. And an expert on ABLE accounts
and work incentives who has worked in the work force system as well on employment issues.
Kevin Nickerson is the director of the American dream employment network and has deep background
in employment for people with disabilities and disability planning. We also have Joie
Hill who we are happy to be here with us. We will hear opening remarks from her shortly.
She is the social insurance specialist. And our liaison on ABLE as we work on that and
has a background with work incentives as well and we will share and speak about national
disability and employment awareness months and updates to Social Security materials on
ABLE accounts. So we will be hearing from her shortly. Let’s go ahead and go to the next slide.>>Miranda, could I interrupt you for one
second. Your voice is going in and out a little bit.>>Is that any better?>>Yes, it is. Thank you.>>Okay, great. Let me know if that happens
again. Thank you, everyone. So what is our agenda for today? Our agenda
is we will be covering first off what is national disability employment awareness month? We
will be then turning over to Joie Hill for opening remarks. And then we will get into
a historical and current perspective around working age individuals with disabilities
and poverty. And then we will be talking about opportunity and resources for now and into
the future because things are changing. We will be talking about ABLE accounts and financial
independence as well as SSA work supports for use and employment network services. We
will also be integrating throughout that information and stories from ABLE account owners who are
youth in transition and their success stories and what that means for them as well a hearing
from an ABLE account owner who is on the north side of transition. So let’s go ahead and
go to the next slide. Is what national disability employment awareness month. Also known as NDEAM. This is observed every
October from the U.S. Department of Labor and the office of disability employment policy
or O‑DEP. And NDEAM it celebrates America’s workers with disability and celebrates the
importance of inclusive policies and practices to ensure all Americans who want to work can
work and have access to services and supports to enable them to do so. With continued advances
in such supports including accessible technology, it’s is easier than ever before for America’s
employers to hire people with disability in high demand. You can get materials and the
title is the right talent right now at dol.gv/odep/topics/ndeam. And in terms of NDEAM what can you do. The
2019 theme emphasizes the essential role people with disabilities play in America’s economic
success especially in an era when historically low unemployment and global competition are
creating a high demand for skilled talent. At work it’s what people can do that matters
and we all know this who are joining this call. So some things to do are display one
of the campaign for disability employment’s working works posters to emphasize the value
of work and important roles that individuals, employers and healthcare professionals play
in helping people work and you can also visit the what can you do campaign.org. All one
word. What can you do campaign.org to get some public service announcements and information
and posters from that series. With that, I will turn things over to Joie
Hill to give us opening remarks. Thank you for joining us today.>>Thank you. Hello to everyone. We appreciate
the opportunity to participate in today’s webinar. And again, my name is Joie Hill and
I’m from Social Security Administration and I’m in the office of communication. As Miranda
mentioned, October is national disability employment awareness month and during this
month we observe and celebrate the contributions of people with disabilities and the work force
whose careers are in every industry. This is also a time to encourage people of disabilities
who are not in a work force but are interested in going to work. Here at Social Security
we understand that for millions of people including transition aged youth with disabilities
from the ages of 14 to 24 and their families work as more than a source of income. It is
a part of how they can become. It gives them purpose, pride and connection with others
in the work force. If you or the transition aged youth in your life is ready to go to
work for the first time, we can help. Today’s webinar will include information on our work
incentives which are special rules that make it possible for people with disabilities who
receive our benefits to work and still receive monthly payments and Medicare or Medicaid.
The webinar will also provide details on accounts and how the tax advantage savings account
can support education and employment while increasing the financial well being of those
receiving our benefits and other federal benefits. To share information about ABLE, we have updated
our website and publications. The website page that was updated is called the SSI spotlight.
The publications that we have updated are entitled, what you need to know about SSI
when you turn 18, disability benefits, and understanding SSI. All these publications
are on‑line. The current slide has the website addresses for all of them. We also have recurring
posts on our Facebook and Twitter accounts and information about ABLE is on our monitors
displayed in Social Security field offices nationwide. We will continue to share information
with the ABLE resource center on our progress with communicating ABLE information. Now I
will hand it back over to Miranda and the ABLE NRC team and American dream network for
the presentation. Thank you for your time and attention.>>Thank you, for being here with us. I know
it’s helpful to get the update and information from Social Security Administration on the
strides that are being made around ABLE and including more information about ABLE and
updating these important resources, please, everyone, access these resources, check them
out. It will be very helpful for you. So let’s go to the next slide and we are going
to talk here about ‑‑ and not spend a whole lot of time but we thought it would
be helpful to give us a perspective about where we have been and where we are and where
we are going. Give that perspective of working age individuals with working age and poverty
and how we combat that. Let’s look at the next slide and take a look at data on working
age people with disabilities. This might be information that some of you on this call
might know and others may sense but we wanted to get us all on the same page here when we
understand that Americans with disabilities make up an estimated 20% of the U.S. population.
So that’s 40 to 57 million people and many people with disabilities live at or near the
poverty level. One in five families have a family member with a disability and of those
35% are 22 million working age adults with disabilities ages 16 to 64. Working age adults
with disabilities are twice as likely to live in poverty than those without disabilities.
28% for those with disabilities compared to 13% compared to those without. And then major
cause of poverty among disability beneficiaries is the low rates of employment within that
population. So what contributes to employment disparity?
Well, a number of things do. Lack of education. Limited resources and savings to access education
from a federal reserve report we know that research indicates that engaging in the activity
of saving for college increases enrollment by 30%. Additionally in terms of what contributes
to employment disparity, efforts to retain Social Security in public benefits and for
good cause as well but those efforts can contribute to employment disparity and lower employment
rates and poverty as well as limited employment histories and limited knowledge of financial
education access mainstream banking services. This is all what we are here today to talk
about. So how can we help to end this cycle of poverty? I can think of no one better to
turn it over right now than my colleague Laurie Schaller.>>Thank you, Miranda. So employment as a
foundation to greater income and savings, a large body of research finds that paid work
experience while in high school is an important predictor of whether youth with disabilities
are employed as adults. Youth with an individualized education plan and IEP, are less likely than
their peers to participate in work, extracurricular sports and clubs or to get together with friends.
Youth need opportunities to build self‑esteem and skills that transfer to employment. These
stats are being pulled from the U.S. Department of Education report dated March of 2017 in
preparing for life after high school. So youth who have a disability really need more opportunities
than other youth to engage in employment related activities so that they can develop the necessary
skill set. School work experience. Well, schools are
appearing to attempt to fill part of the gap by offering school sponsored work experiences.
Schools only play a modest role in finding jobs for both youth with and without an individualized
education plan because most paid jobs are not school sponsored. The Department of Labor
youth employment programs are offered to individuals ages 14 to 24. And so Miranda, if you would
like to follow with the next note.>>Thank you, Laurie.>>Yes, let’s go ahead what lies ahead for
people with disability. I think we are all fairly familiar with the old paradigm. Which
can still feel for folks who are not aware of the new paradigm like the current paradigm
but it is the old paradigm where one must accept a life of poverty in exchange for public
assistance. Especially when we think about the programs that might limit an individual
to no more than $2,000 in assets and when we think about public assistance and the importance
of health care in particular as being a key driver for holding people in place. The new
paradigm, this is where we really have the opportunity to live into the full promise
of the Americans with Disabilities Act or the ADA which promise equal ‑‑ equality
of opportunity that full participation and independent living and economics self‑sufficiency
are all parts of that promise from the ADA. This includes access to earned income. Faith
and affordable financial services which are now available and we will be talking about
here and opportunities to save and build assets and what that looks like. Having personal
control over finances and that kind of autonomy and agency that so oftentimes people with
disabilities have not experienced or had access to in the past. And all of this of course
includes the importance around the knowledge and development of skills to make informed
financial decisions and for someone to be able to manage their own money. Laurie, can you talk about the education legislation
that supports the development of employment skills that comes out of all of this and other
legislation?>>That’s great. Thank you, Miranda. The Individuals
with Disabilities Education Improvement Act, IDEA, requires the inclusion of transition
planning for all students who have an IEP. Transition planning must start before age
16 and parental participation is encouraged. Transitional goals and services focus on instruction
and support services needed to help students move from the school environment into a job,
vocational program or other program designed to promote independent living. This may help
in overcoming barriers to employment if services and supports are identified as early as possible.
And that individuals and family members are active participates. And then that a connection
can be made being connected to programs like the Social Security ticket to work program,
with access to services, information and work incentives and this helps to maximize transitional
success. So I just want to share as I do presentations across the United States, I am surprised to
learn many parents are not aware that their youth who have a disability who receive perhaps
SSI and/or SSDI, they are in fact allowed to work and work supports help youth to pursue
employment. Parent‑teacher conferences. So 84% of PARENTS
who have a child with an IEP attend parent‑teacher conferences. This is an opportunity to include
dialogue about preparation for employment and dialogue around services and supports
that focus on training, working and career development. It is also an important opportunity
to discuss savings opportunities, including ABLE accounts. This knowledge is power. Sharing
information, including the fact that youth under the age of 24 can qualify for a Social
Security disability insurance, SSDI, with as little as six quarters of coverage by earning
$1,360 this year and that equals one quarter and also accrue credits towards future retirement
benefits, this is priceless for students future financial stability. So people need to understand
that by a youth working, they can become eligible for SSDI benefits and retirement in the future
based upon their own work history. Also individuals who receive a means tested benefits can and
should save. Legislation geared toward financial capability.
So the Americans with Disabilities Act protects qualified individuals from job discrimination
on the basis of a disability. Under the ADA a disability is a physical or mental impairment
that substantially limits a major life activity. The ADA also protects you if you have a history
of such a disability or if an employer believes that you have such a disability, even if you
don’t have that disability. So that link is EEOC.gov/facts/ada 18. html. The work force
innovation and opportunities act or WIOA public law 113‑128 places renewed emphasis on offering
strategies to serve individuals with barriers to employment including youth and adults with
disabilities. It provides financial assistance to state American job centers, and through
one‑stop partner agencies and organizations. Next slide. Miranda, would you like to cover additional
information?>>Thank you, Laurie, yes. Let’s talk about
ABLE legislation here and financial independence. The ABLE Act was signed into law in December 19,
2014, and creates tack advantaged savings accounts for eligible individuals with disabilities.
We will talk more about that in a moment. This is millions of individuals with disability
and their families receive and depend on a variety of public benefit for income, healthcare,
food and housing assistance. There is a resource limit for most means‑tested benefits. ABLE
savings, that does not count. It does not impact eligibility for federally‑funded,
means tested benefits. What does this mean? For families who live at or near the federal
poverty level, working and saving in an ABLE account can transform a youth’s life. A young
person’s life. We should call them young people instead of youth. An ABLE account can offer
the opportunity for young people to learn money management skills which are very important
in a market for success into the future. And an ABLE account is a safe place to save earnings
that can be used to support education, employment and retirement savings for the future we have
more and details about that that will be open our website as well and other webinars. Let’s
go now that we talked about a little bit ABLE legislation and financial independence, and
Laurie you mentioned before the work Force Innovation and Opportunity Act. Let’s talk
about youth program services because that’s what is going to impact our young people,
young adults who have disabilities and who are looking into work and to financial literacy
as well as a resource for them. WIOA youth program services, they have a financial
literacy education as one of the 14 program elements for their youth programs under WIOA.
So financial literacy education is actually a requirement in there. And financial literacy
education, that refers to activities that provide young people with the knowledge and
skills they need to achieve long‑term financial stability. And success. Financial literacy
education encompasses information and activities on a range of topics such as creating budgets,
setting up checking and savings accounts, managing spending, credit and debt, understanding
credit reports and credit scores and also protecting against identity theft. And more
information can be found at youth.workforce gps.org/resources. And looking under the financial
literacy education piece there. There will be more information. Laurie, can you talk to us about the link
to transition‑age youth.>>Yes, so we had a lot of questions prior
to today’s webinar about what age encompasses transition‑age youth so that’s youth between
the ages of 14 to 24, but we want to emphasize here that our work ‑‑ there are work
supports for individuals who receive SSI and/or SSDI benefits up through their retirement,
their age of retirement. So we want to urge everyone if you missed out on the opportunity
as a youth, please explore employment opportunities and work supports designed for you regardless
of your age. In critical transition age years a young person’s future can be determined.
Part of a successful future includes obtaining the knowledge and skills a person will need
to maximize their independence and financial self‑sufficiency. This may involve accessing
employment and educational opportunities including career and technical education, obtaining
employment related services and supports, finding stable housing and acquiring health
insurance coverage. All of these supports are ABLE account qualified disability expenses.
So savings in an ABLE account can be spent on items such as these. To learn more how
to transition successfully, the national collaborative on work force and disability for youth, NCWD/youth,
has identified guide posts for success based upon research. So the link is provided here,
ncwd‑youth.info/publications/guide posts. And the guide posts framework is organized
in the following manner. After providing a details list within each guide post of what
all youth need, the framework then describes additional specific needs pertaining to youth
with disabilities. By addressing these specific needs, policy makers, program administrators,
youth service practitioners, parents, family members and youth will have access to a foundation
that will lead to work, further education and independent community living. High expectations
are held for all youth including youth with disabilities. Equality of opportunity for
everyone including non‑discrimination, individualization including an integration. Full participation
through self‑determination, informed choice and participation in decision making, independent
living, including skills development and long‑term supports and services, and competitive employment
and economic self‑sufficiency which may include supports and individualized person
driven and culturally and linguistically diverse services. So Miranda, if you could please add on to
this by speaking who is eligible to open an ABLE account.>>How can ABLE help transition aged youth.
Let’s talk about who is eligible. An ABLE account, what it is a section 529A tax advantage
savings account and owned by a person who has a disability. So to qualify for an ABLE
account the person must meet two rules. They must have a disability that began before age
26. That means someone can be 50 or 70 if they had a disability that they acquired before
the age of 26 they will qualify. And certainly transition age youth would meet that age marker.
And they also have to have one of these. They must either have to be entitled to benefits
based on blindness or disability under the SSI or SSDI program, or they must have obtained
a disability certification from a licensed physician that identifies as physical or mental
disability or blindness the results and marked and severe functional limitations which have
lasted or can be expected to last for at least 12 con continuous months or result in death.
So that is the eligibility marker there. Laurie, can you talk to us about ABLE to work
and increased savings opportunities one we figure out someone is eligible for ABLE?>>Yes. So the ABLE to work provision ‑‑
as part of the tax cut and jobs act of 2017 allows ABLE account owners who work and earn
income to make additional contributions above the $15,000 annual contribution limit if their
employer does not contribute to a workplace retirement plan on their behalf. So additional
contributions can be made from whichever is less. Either gross income for that taxable
year, or up to $12,140 if you live in most states. It’s a little bit more based upon
the federal poverty rate for Alaska that amount is $15,180 and for people who live in Hawaii
that additional amount is $13,960. Earnings that are the result of employment are still
counted in terms of earned income or substantial gainful activity and those earnings are taken
into consideration when determining eligibility for certain public benefits. Miranda, would you like to talk about ABLE
account distributions.>>Laurie, distributions can be taken from
an ABLE account to pay for qualified disability expenses, also known as QDEs. So QDEs are
expenses for items or services needed to maintain health, independence or quality of life. These
should be broadly understood and shouldn’t be limited to expenses for which there is
a medical necessity or expenses that provide no benefit to others outside of the benefits
of the beneficiary. They can benefit others and don’t have to be directly related to medical
necessity. These are important to keep in mind. We have entire webinars and case summary
series on QDE and best and promising practices. These are great resources to check out. I
encourage you to check out the resources on this. Ablenrc.org/resources/webinars/q.d.
es. We will bring you there and we have our different uploads and information on q.d.
e expenses and a PDF on that and case summary. Check those resources out for more in‑depth
information on QDEs broadly but for our purposes today I would like to hand it over to Laurie
to talk about the disability expenses with examples of education and employment related
expenses that can help transition aged youth. Laurie?>>Thank you. So these are related specifically
to continuing education and employment. So any cost related to interview preparation
and/or résumé development. Employment training and support. Job coaching. Transportation
including the vehicle purchase, the assistive technology, costs associated with certificates,
accreditations and/or job related trainings, education, continuing education, and college
and certificate programs. So I just want to say, though, if a person goes to let’s say
their American job center or Department of Labor or to a college program or to vocational
rehabilitation, say things within an ABLE account do not supplant the funding and services
that a person is eligible for at those centers. So if we could go to the next slide, so for
example, when completing the free application for federal student aid, the FAFSA form, the
Department of Education recognizes the importance of an ABLE account and the significant role
it can play in the educational process. The FAFSA application lists ABLE as an excluded
resource on page 9. And investments do not include the home you live in. This is what
FAFSA has to say. The value of life insurance. ABLE accounts, retirement plans, including
401(k) plans, pension funds, annuities, non‑education IRAs, code plans or cash savings and checking
accounts already reports in questions 40 and 88. You can find that at student aid d.gov/sa/sites/default/files/2020‑21‑fafsa.PDF.>>So how can ‑‑ we are suggesting here
to think about ABLE being introduced to individualized employment plans that support employment.
So what does this mean? Service plans that support employment are plans that outline
an individual’s vocational goal and the supports activities and resources needed to achieve
that goal. This plan is in brightening and it’s agree ‑‑ in writing and agreed by
the individual and as well as their circle of support and the service providers that
will be providing supports towards achieving that goal. An ABLE account can be used to
augment services and supports that are already available or funds for those that are not
available. They might go beyond. Additional services or supports that would be helpful
that aren’t covered by others. So examples of these in terms of qualified disability
expenses and Laurie mentioned some of this but paying for additional job coaching. Counseling,
assistive technology that’s not covered. Transportation. Work uniforms, tools, et cetera. And then
in fact instead of just listing those here, I thought we might go to our next slide and
start sharing ‑‑ we’ve got three stories I want to share with you of ABLE account owners.
And how some of these QDEs play out in real life and how ABLE is supporting employment. So we see here we’ve got our ABLE National
Resource Center ambassadors. The first of whom Amy Tessler is the parent of Scott who
is 23 and he is seen here working at his first project search internship at the Doubletree
and currently working 20 hours a week for a school district watch washing vehicles.
Scott was diagnosed on the autism spectrum when he was two years old and Amy set up an
ABLE account to complement the special needs trust that is actually going to be the major
financial support for Scott’s future. Scott pays his full share of housing expenses with
his supplemental security income, his SSI check, his wages and supplemental funds from
his ABLE account. His SSI payment is based on the full SSI rate because ABLE fundraise
not counted as income this payment is reduced due to his wages but he uses work incentives
which we will be talking about in the next half of our presentation to keep more of his
income so stay tuned to those future slides where we will dive into those details. The funds from his ABLE account are not counted
as income by SSI. That’s helpful here. And importantly Scott uses his ABLE funds to pay
for his transportation to and from his job. So he uses Lyft and Uber and the debit card
he has set up through his ABLE program that’s what he uses to pay for this employment related
support in terms of transportation. And what Amy has to share about Scott is Scott will
always need help managing money and paying his bills. It wouldn’t be prudent to give
him access large amount of money but with the ABLE account will help him. And in our
situation she says having both the special needs trust and the ABLE account is ideal
for maximizing his benefits and helping him achieve some financial independence. So let’s take a look now at another example
of successful employment and from our ABLE National Resource Center ambassador Denise
who is the parent of an ABLE account owner. Denise’s youngest son Jacob, a fourth of four
sons is a 23‑year‑old office assistant at the little leaf learning center. I think
he turned 24 in September. Jacob who has Down Syndrome is diligent about saving money in
his ABLE account because just like other 20 somethings who live with their parent, Jacob
can’t wait to move out of mom and dad’s house. His goal is to purchase his own home with
a yard for his dog miller who you see here in the awesome sunglasses. So Jacob has actually
made two purchases with his ABLE fund so far. Both employment related and qualified disability
expenses. One is then a modified bike that he purchased that he hopes to use in the future.
Not currently using for this but hopes to use in the future as independent transportation
to work. Currently works situation is a little farther out. But he also uses his ABLE funds
to pay for travel expenses to audition to be on the runway at the global Down Syndrome
foundation. The beautiful be yourself. Their fashion show in 2017 and he won that audition.
And you see him in the lower left hand corner on the runway with a super model. And Denise
says as a parent I want to make sure that resources are available for Jacob to live
as independently as possible. When the time comes when his siblings are his primary support
we want to make preparations so their lives are not burdened financially. He has a ticket
that is assigned and I think that’s ‑‑ we want to be looking into that as well. What
the opportunities might be for that into the future and in terms of looking at work and
employment and I know Kevin is going to be talking about continuing disability reviews.
And that’s a situation for Scott and individuals like Jacob and Scott who we just talked about
something to be considering and to benefit around that. So let’s talk about our final example today
of transition age young person who is both all of these folks are in their easterly 20s
and are on the north side of the transition age so it’s good to look to them for examples
of how ABLE has been used and can be used and also how work incentives can fit in here.
And Taylor is actually here with us. I will tell you a little bit about her and then I’m
going to throw it over to her to hear from her and hear her voice. Taylor is a 24‑year‑old
graduate at the University of California with a BA in molecular and cell biology. She got
in the 92nd percentile in the MCAT this spring. She is using her ABLE account for tuition
so she doesn’t have to take out significant loans once accepted into medical school and
Taylor has shared that she was ecstatic when she learned about the ABLE Act and the financial
freedom it offered and what a mental relief known that she could save for medical school
and not have to worry about losing her medical coverage or taking out those astronomical
school loans and because of her ABLE account having that better and more secure future
and into the future using her ABLE account for housing, ‑‑ and retirement and Taylor,
I want to ask you, can you tell us about how your ABLE account and past current or future
use of work incentives will help you achieve your employment goals and increase your financial
well being? If we can unmute Taylor’s line.>>Hey, everyone. So I initially ‑‑>>Taylor, could you speak up just a little
bit.>>Sorry. Good?>>Great. Thank you.>>Great. I initially opened my ABLE account
to start saving for med school because as everyone is probably noticed med school and
just going to college and pursuing an education in general is getting more and more expensive.
But ‑‑ I became a client of the Department of Rehabilitation in California and like was
mentioned previously, I actually had a particular that was activated because of it. And one
thing that is great about asking a ticket to work if you are on SSI, is that the progress
with your employment goal, you’re continuing disability review will be suspended. And for
someone who may have a temporary disability or is looking for the future, that is a great
resource you can use. Looking back in college one thing I didn’t use but I wished I had
was the student earned income exception. I think Miranda will talk about shortly. And
for someone who is working towards employment goal or is in school and wants to pursue the
paid internship or a summer job or a part‑time job during the academic school year, I think
it’s a great way to earn some money and even put it in an ABLE account, use an ABLE account
for that. And then once you start working more hours or even full time, you can put
that money for job coaching or whatever you need to help with employment. Right now I
also want to mention that I am currently applying for financial aid for med school. And as previously
slide it was mentioned about FAFSA. One thing that some people don’t really realize is that
student assets are weighed more heavily than the parent’s assets. My ‑‑ [technical
difficulties] will it be counted against us. One thing that the Department of Education
has recently said is that they are updating it so that a student’s ABLE account won’t
count as an asset or an investment when you are filling out the application. And that’s
great because with college you want to be able to give your child an education, but
you also don’t want it to be a financial burden. So I think that is ‑‑ you can use. And
in terms of an ABLE account, one other thing is for people not pursuing education if they
immediately want to go into the work force and use a tool like the Department of Rehabilitation.
One thing I was talking about with my work incentive planner yesterday was when you start
your job, I mean, you’re DUR case eventually closes. When you need something like job coaching,
then one thing you can do is you can save some of your money in an ABLE account and
when you need to use it for a job coaching, then one thing you can do is you could put
it as an impairment related work expense which Miranda will also talk about a little later
and that is another work incentive you can use.>>Thank you so much, Taylor, for your insight
and perspective and story. You are very savvy. I know you spent a lot of time doing research
into this and making those good sound decisions for yourself. And everyone’s story is individual.
Your story is different from Jacobs which is different from Scotts which is different
from everyone who is listening in here, right, and their family and service providers are
helping them. One last question I have, what advice do you have for other transition aged
young folks or families or service providers who are listening here today?>>Well, like you said, every family is different.
Every person with a disability and family who has a child with a disability is going
to be different and have different needs and different goals. But I truly believe that
one thing that could help them and could help everyone is just open an ABLE account even
if you are not unsure right now, but you want to make a plan for the future, it’s a great
thing to do and to just have that safety net. And to use that in combination with work incentives
and research the ones that are best for the individual and their family.>>Thank you so much for joining us and speaking
to everyone here today we certainly appreciate. We enjoy having you as one of our ABLE national
resource ambassadors. As Taylor mentioned, we are going to be talking about Social Security
employment supports and ABLE accounts. It’s actually not going to be me. We will get a
break from my voice and get to finally hear from Kevin Nickerson with the American dream
and employment network. And for those of you following along, it’s a good thing we have
75 minutes today because we will need the 15 minutes after the hour. I will hand it
to Kevin and you will give us a high level overview and great resources and information
and ideas, Kevin, on Social Security work incentives and employment networks and Laurie
will pipe in as well. Take it away, Kevin.>>Thank you, Miranda, I’m sure going to try.
I was tasked with giving you the information you need to know about work incentives in
four slides. Everyone knows that’s not possible. I will scratch the surface today is what I
will do with this audience. And just give you high level information like Miranda said
if I could if you would indulge me to talk to you a little bit about my background, I
have been advising people since early 90s, I hate to admit, on their benefits and probably
have talked to thousands of beneficiaries and it’s given me unique perspective. I also
started the first employment network in New York state which I’m proud of that has led
into other things and we will talk a little bit about that today. Miranda mentioned ADEN
and I will speak on that in a little bit. Let’s talk about work incentives. What are
these things? I think many beneficiaries out there don’t know anything about them at all.
That’s been my experience in talking to folks over the years. I think if I work, generally
is what I heard, I’m going to lose my benefits and that’s not true. That’s farthest from
the truth that it could be. Because of all of these policies Social Security has and
because of all of these things they created called work incentives. Work incentives allow
beneficiaries to go to work who want to work and to keep some or all of their monthly benefit
for a period of time along with Medicare and Medicaid and that’s super important and I’m
sure to people listening today. Now how does this ‑‑ I’m going to try to ‑‑ we’ve ‑‑
this together with ABLE and how this works but you can imagine here if you got more money
because you are using work incentives which you will you have opportunity. And if you
have an ABLE account and you have extra money, I have good ideas for you and I think so do
my colleagues and that would be ‑‑ why don’t you save some of that for the future,
right? We want you to think about this more broadly, too. For example combining these
work incentives we talk about and what if you are working? You have employment earnings
and now we’ve got these tax credits that exist today when we combine all of these things
there are some opportunities for people to save. Now more than ever because of the ABLE
accounts that are available to people. Now as I said, I won’t be able to give you
the information you need about work incentives today and I will talk more on the next slide
about a number of work incentives scratching the surface. If you wanted to look more closely
at these, Social Security has a fantastic resource I refer anybody that will read it
to called the red book. And you will find it with a link that you can’t get to now but
you will be able to when you have this PowerPoint. And I highly recommend you look at that. That
has ‑‑ it’s short and concise but it will tell you a lot of information about work
incentives that will be talked about today. Next slide, please. So in short, here is some examples of work
incentives for SSI and for disability insurance and beneficiaries. Those are the two main
categories of benefit we will talk about. What was mentioned already was the student
earned income inclusion. I will talk about the next slide or two here and someone mentioned
I noticed in the chat that is a powerful work incentive and I con agree more. It certainly
is. We will show you an example why that is important for ABLE account owners. Just talking
generally about these incentives for SSI, when people go to work and you can when you
have SSI, the first $20, Social Security doesn’t count and I know don’t fall out of your chair
that sounds like a lot. There is more. What really is matters is this next bullet where
we talk about the $65 earned income exclusion if you are working. The next $65 they won’t
count and what’s important is that one‑half of the remainder after that doesn’t count.
So that’s ‑‑ I think of that as a two for one deal. If you can earn the 65, they
don’t look at that and then for every $2 above that they only count one. I’m not a math Giant
and I could tell you if you are working on SSI, you are better off financially. There
are other incentives specifically for folks that get this benefit. Impairment related
work expenses and blind work expenses. I will lump together in saying they offer opportunities
for you to pay for expenses needed because you have a disability in your working that
can then be recouped in some ways and in part or in full in some cases through your SSI
check. This next piece, 1619b, I will tell you if will leave you with anything this is
the most important thing to tell you if you are going to work and on SSI, this to me if
you are getting benefits it protects your Medicaid. This is the number one reason and
over the years the people I talked to haven’t told me I don’t want to work. They said I’m
afraid to work because I will lose my insurance. They aren’t concerned about the cash benefit
they are concerned about the health care and rightfully so. So to put you at ease know
that 1619b is a provision in the policy that Social Security protected your Medicaid. I
will give you an of that on the next slide. We have some other ‑‑ we have other incentives
here for ssi. One called plan to achieve self‑support and another opportunity for you to save money
that doesn’t count as a resource. As long as it’s for a qualified goal that Social Security
will have to approve. There is ways to get back to benefits, too, for both SSI and disability
beneficiaries. It’s an incentive that came out of the ticket legislation. Called an expedited
re‑instatement of benefits so that’s pretty exciting. So now if people go to work and
they have to stop working because their condition crops up and this is after they have been
terminated from benefits so they have gone down this path and they are doing great and
they have been terminated from benefits and expected it because they are working and doing
fine and then the disability crops up and have to stop working what do we do? Do we
have to reapply? This is a back door for Social Security for former beneficiaries who decided
to go to work and have been terminated and then stop working because of their condition
again. If that concerns you there is an answer for that now, too. So that’s pretty exciting.
And then I will talk about ticket to work and how that supports both of these audiences.
It’s not just for one or the other if I could, if you would just bear with me a minute more
so I can talk about disability insurance, this is another benefit that people get. What’s
different about the two is disability insurance is going to be something that’s earned. It’s
an earned benefit and for folks who have a work history and a background and have what’s
called insured status so they worked enough to have this status to be eligible to apply
if they have a qualifying disability which will be the same for both of these benefits
if you are eligible for disability you get nine trial work period months and that’s pretty
exciting because you can make as much as you want during those nine months. You keep your
cash benefit in full, you keep your health care. And it’s to do just what it says. To
try working again without having to rug pulled out from under you and ‑‑ I like to think
of that as a maximum strength work incentive. There is not much you can do wrong during
that trial work period. Beyond that, there is another three years
after that they offer you Social Security called the extended period of eligibility
which is another safety net that keeps you protected when you are working. You may not
get your cash benefit for certain months during that three years but you will never be terminated.
So that’s a very important protection. There are other incentives I won’t talk much about
that can help in how Social Security looks at wages of people who receive disability
insurance when they are working one I called subsidy and impairment work expense in this
column can apply to folks who get this benefit but in a different way. What it will be used
as is a way to look at how Social Security views your earnings let’s say for today. There
are some savings programs to help people with Medicare Part B and costs associated with
that if you are ‑‑ your income is not too much. And then I think most importantly
that I could tell you about this benefit there are extended periods of coverage to keep you
connected to Medicare when you are working. If you are worried about that disconnect because
you are going to work, I’m going to cut to the chase and tell you that for a lot of reasons
I won’t have time to describe today you have years to make a decision as to what to do
about health care because you won’t lose that Medicare for many years. Eight, nine years
you don’t have to worry about it. We will have plenty of time to talk about that with
you and develop a plan and look at employer sponsored health care and other options for
you. What other options are there besides health care through employer? I listed one
called Medicaid Brian and it came ‑‑ buy‑in and this came out of the legislation
offered states an opportunity to expand Medicaid coverage for people with disabilities who
are working. It’s a true state work incentive if they adopted it. I can’t tell if they have
in your state. We will have to look that up but most states have this and it will vary
state by state. I think I’m just scratching the surface but
I hope what this shows you is there are so many things that Social Security is doing
today and even since legislation of the ticket to work program to help people try working.
So we will talk more about that in detail if we end up working with you if we could
go to the next slide, please. I mentioned the student earned income exclusion
and so did somebody in the chat. Someone was obviously knows something about benefits says
this is a powerful incentive. I agree with that. For this year an SSI recipient can go
to work and obviously this is for youth that are ‑‑ not obviously. It’s student. They
have to be a full‑time student and there are rules around that that we won’t get into.
But let’s say they are in school and they want to work. Well, I will just give you some
context to this in my opinion I think Social Security has made this such a powerful work
incentive for youth because they want people to try working. They really ‑‑ I don’t
think Social Security wants anything to get in the way of youth trying to get to work.
As such, this year you can have ‑‑ you can go to work and as somebody who is a full‑time
student you can write off $1,870 in a month that you earned before there is any reduction
in your SSI. I don’t foe about you, folks. I have been on the earth awhile. When I was
a student and getting my first job, I couldn’t have come close to that amount in monthly
earnings, maybe today. People are. Let me just say if you go beyond that, if you are
saying that’s good but I might go beyond that what happens then? All of the other standard
incentives will further reduce the wages that you earned that Social Security would look
at. In short, here is what I want you to know. You will keep most of your money if not all
of it when you are a youth trying to work. Generally speaking for the first time. Pretty
exciting. I think my conclusions in how I think this
ties to ABLE is obvious. This is allows people with disabilities to try working without impact
or with a marginal impact if you have a marginal impact you have done so well that month in
earnings you probably don’t care. Good for you. It also offers an opportunity for people
to save money they wouldn’t have had if this incentive didn’t exist. Your SSI would immediately
be impact bid earnings if you are a youth in this position. But not so in this case.
In this case you get this huge opportunity to save some money for your future. Now I
will say this. I think that’s hard for youth. That’s a separate issue. That is the whole
idea of saving that extra money but that’s a separate webinar if we could go to the next
slide, please. The other piece I wanted to tell you two things
I really saw today that I thought really impacts people that get ‑‑ have ABLE accounts
and work incentives and how they work together. Well, for SSI recipients I mentioned the 1619B
provision. That has nothing to do with ABLE. It doesn’t. I will talk about why it matters
and that’s true, with very the great income expansions in each state for folks on SSI
that are working and it allows you to keep your Medicaid. This falls under 1619b. In
New York where I’m calling you from today it’s over $46,000 that people can earn and
I no they are people saying you got to be kidding me. No way someone on SSI can earn
that much and keep Medicaid. If you didn’t know that, this is the case. And you will
learn about how to get more of this kind of counsel in a minute. But let’s say you are
in New York and you made over $46,000. You are working and maybe making a lot of money
and here is what different for you as an SSI recipient now working. You have money you
haven’t had before. And maybe you got some debts and it’s easy to figure out what to
do with that. You will pay off debts. If you are young you don’t and wonder what do I do
with this money. If you put it in the bank that’s problem potentially because of the
resource limit which is $2,000 for somebody who is single or $3,000 for married couple.
In comes the ABLE account. This is the intersect if you have an ABLE account you don’t have
to worry about that resource limit because you can park some of that extra money that
you have thankfully because of the incentive in the ABLE account and that won’t count as
a resource. Therefore it’s not going to be a problem with you maintaining your Medicaid
under this provision. So you are not only saving for your future. You are also maintaining
your insurance and so this is one obvious way I see where ABLE accounts can be a really
big deal for people on SSI that are going to work. Let’s see here. I will turn now to Laurie
to talk about ‑‑ well if you want to know more about this and you need assistance
if benefits planning, how do you get it?>>So Kevin talked about ‑‑ I don’t know
18 different work supports for a person who receive both SSI and SSDI, they are eligible
for both work supports so this can quickly get complicated. And people are eligible for
free work incentives planning counseling services and so with the projects, work incentive planning
and are community based organizations that provide individualized employment focus benefits
counseling and work incentives planning to beneficiaries who receive a disability benefit
SSI and/or SSDI and the focus for those services is to help that person focus on work supports
around education or directly to employment and that assists people to understand maybe
what work supports they had already used and they didn’t realize they had used them in
the past and now what work supports they are eligible for from this point forward in the
future and at critical points of decision making what options are available for them.
So counseling enables beneficiaries with beneficiaries to make inform choices about work and support
them in making a successful transition to employment. There are also community work incentive coordinators,
CWICs commonly called a benefits planner or benefits counselor who works with a W‑IPA
project and they analyze all public benefits including the SSI and/or SSDI. They will ask,
for example, what a person’s financing goal is. What public assistance that individual
may be receiving now. So maybe that’s HUD, housing benefits, maybe it’s SNAP benefits ‑‑
SNAP benefits and that person will be informed at the level of employment what they want
to pursue how might those programs change their amount of funding and what work supports
are available through each of those entities to help that person save more money and get
more sound foundation that will lead to financial stability for that individual in the future. So learning how to effectively use work incentives
and combining it with other strategies including using tax credits at both the state and federal
level is one of the best tax advantage ways to save money in the ABLE account. How do
we find one of these benefits counselors? So a certified work incentive counselor CWIC
who works for WIPA like I said, analyzes all public benefits and provides free benefits
counseling services to individuals who receive disability based benefits from Social Security.
So to find that counselor in your community, you can go to a website and type in choosework.ssa.gov/findhelp
and use the find help tool to locate a provider
and that website is sponsored by the Social Security Administration. Why a community work incentive coordinator?
So SSI and SSDI work supports are very complex. Beneficiaries face decision points when working
and need to know these items in advance so that they can make informed choices. Beneficiaries
may need help or guidance in navigating this Social Security system to use various work
incentives and to report wages to avoid overpayments of benefits. Beneficiaries may need help in
answering questions related to contributions to an ABLE account or to disbursements from
an ABLE account, too. So find a CWIC benefits planner, go to choosework.ssa.gov and they
can tell you about all of the work incentives including providing information about the
ticket to work program. Miranda would you like to speak a little on
the ticket to work program for youth age 18 and older?>>Yes, I would and I would share quickly
that the ticket to work program commonly called ticket offered Social Security beneficiaries
with disability age 18 through 64 for those of you who might be above that youth range
or might have family members or others the choices, tunes and supports needed to find
and keep employment increase their earnings for work and reduce their reliance on cash
benefits. Participants can retain payments and Medicare and/or Medicaid while they transition
off of benefits. The goal is to help ticket holders decrease dependence on cash benefits
and eventually become self‑sufficient through work. That’s the story that Taylor is living.
With her goal of becoming a physician. Using ABLE accounts, work incentives to transition
and become self‑sufficient and use that ABLE account and not beyond the benefits.
Ticket expands the network of service providers which provide free services and supports to
beneficiaries to get good jobs, establish careers and become less reliant on public
benefits. Or leave them behind. The service providers are called employment networks and
that’s what Kevin and his work with the American dream employment network are and they also
are vocational rehabilitation agencies who may also take the ticket and assign it to
their agency, could the other private organizations, employers, American job centers conservative
and community rehabilitation providers and others. So Kevin, can you tell us quickly
what ticket to work and things you should know?>>First of all I need to say this is voluntary
program. If you are wondering about the goals and maybe you can achieve those goals, don’t
worry, it’s a voluntary program. Not everybody can do this and it has to do with timing.
Understand the goal and the goal is self‑sufficiency ultimately within a certain period of time.
Know that by agreeing to assign your ticket to an end year agreement to make a steady
effort to achieve the goals. If you don’t, it’s not like anybody is going to impugn you.
It means you didn’t make it but you have to have the commitment to it. Beneficiaries who
are using their ticket and work with an EN are protected from medical continuing disability
reviews. Taylor mentioned that earlier. As long as they are making timely progress. We
will review the timely progress guidelines with you if you decide to work with us as
an employment network. Beneficiaries can combine using the ticket with other work incentives
we talked about. If you want to learn more about the particular program and we have given
you this link here to learn more. If somebody cannot continue to work, there are supports
that make it possible to receive benefits again without needing to reapply. I mentioned
that when I talked about work incentive which I con get too detail because that’s not the
purpose of this webinar. Called re‑instatement of benefits and that’s what that is for. And finally as far as the ticket EN services
provided can vary. First of all these are organizations that can help you with the services
and supports you need to become employed. Miranda mentioned we are one, I’m one of the
directors at American dream employment network. And can also include the public work force
system as was mentioned and VR, vocational rebill agencies also provide services. In
fact, if you are open with vocational rehabilitation but your ticket is in use if you are ‑‑
you have a case open with vocational rehabilitation. And I was mentioning each employment network
is different. Services are going to vary. Some EN specialize in providing services to
specific disability audiences. Some might have the specific languages they can help
with including sign language. And others may provide services in person or virtually. We
do both. There are some examples here of services that are offered if you are wondering what
do you do for us? We help with the job search. We will help with career counseling and help
with job accommodation requests and how to request them with an employer. We do stay
with folks long‑term, much longer than you might imagine for many years after employment
we can provide a follow‑up or long‑term employment support. Financial services are
often offered or by referral and of course Social Security work incentive counseling
as we mentioned today. Not required by employment networks but many are starting to understand
just how important it is to have it. We certainly have that service at American dream. If you would like to find out more about ENs,
and or find an employment network to work with, you can use the find help tool which
we given you the link for. That will help you locate a provider in your area. And I will turn this back to Miranda.>>Great. Thank you, Kevin and Laurie and
Taylor and everyone. We are wrapping up here and we want to talk about as we are in our
final couple moments and thank you everyone for sticking around. This is a lot to pack
in and we have gone a little over but we are here at the end and let’s talk about tieing
it all together and share some resources. So tying it all together. An ABLE account
work incentives an employment. And here. Verifying that work incentives and ABLE accounts are
factored into individualized education plans. And individualized plans for employment. So
as you are developing those IEPs and make sure ABLE accounts and work incentives are
factored in and you are accessing the benefits planner and during that planning process this
is a great resource. These are great resources to consider and important ones as well. So
transition age youth usually end up with more money by working versus not working and can
maintain Medicare and Medicaid even if working causes their monthly benefit to reduce to
zero. That’s really important maintaining those benefits in many instances and it can
be the thing that keeps ‑‑ keeping people on those benefits. So we have these resources
to get off those benefits. Check them out and incorporate them as you can. Also you
know combine one or more work incentives with supports like the federal earned income tax
credit. EITC to increase your ABLE account savings potential. Some states have state
tax credits to increase your savings potential and make sure you are checking that out. There
is great information resources we have at ABLE National Resource Center and the national
disability employment, national disability institute website as well. Consider purchasing
or obtaining needed items or services with savings from the ABLE account or combined
using these funds with work incentives such as PATH. The plan to ‑‑ such as PSS.
Learning these things can be beneficial and useful and make your fund goes further and
your services. And we encourage you to remove some of the fear around working by using ticket
with an employment network. Social Security will not conduct regularly scheduled medical
reviews while a beneficiary is making timely progress. This is a great opportunity and
finally establish goals to work at whatever level is best for you and for the young individual
in your life. To help them achieve their dreams on their own timeline. These are the things
we want to leave you with and finally resources, we have a wealth of resources here from the
ABLE National Resource Center including information on ABLE and tax benefits of more information
on student earned income exclusion support for transition‑age youth. There is that
link to the qualified disability expense fundamentals webinar. And information Kevin covered on
how to access a community coordinator and employment network or vocational rehabilitation
agency through that choose work.ssa.gov/findhelp link. And what you need to know about SSI
when you turn 18 that updated as of August. And the red book with their guide for work
incentives. The next slide you will see ‑‑ I will
leave you with here is some ABLE account stories and goals. You will see the faces of ABLE
account owners and their family members who served as ambassadors from last year and this
year. There is a wide range of stories. And goals that people are hoping for and there
is employment goals in there as well and education goals so check out some of those stories.
They come from our newsletter and our spotlights and highlights we have been doing on ABLE
account owners. The power of those voices. Finally on the next slide if you are interested
in becoming a 2020 ABLE RCN ambassador, you are living into your own goals and you are
using these resources. You don’t have to have all of the answers but if you have a compelling
story would love to hear it and engage you and have you give us your insight and perspective.
Consider applying to be an ABLE NRC ambassador or a member of your family or a service provider
and you think the folks you are working with that would be good at this. It’s a great opportunity.
We really benefit greatly from this insight and this perspective and these voices and
these stories. It also makes these presentations a lot more engaging. Final slide, please do help spread the word
about ABLE. We’ve got our information here on how to subscribe to our achievable newsletter,
our monthly newsletter and you can connect with us on social media on Facebook and Twitter
and please do continue to participate on our upcoming ABLE national resource webinars to
continue to stay informed. We would like to thank again our partners with the American
dream employment network for joining us here today and our ABLE account owners as well
for sharing their stories. And thank you so much to all of my colleagues and to all of
you who have joined us here today for what has been probably a wealth of information
but good information you can factor in as you are making decisions moving forward. We
look forward to having you join us on future webinars and final thanks go to our sponsors
who you see on the screen here including our gold level sponsor prudential. With that,
we would like to wish all of you a great rest of your Thursday. And take care. Thank you.

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