|Decision Makers:||State Government Federal Government|
|Population Reach:||1-9% of WI's population|
|Impact on Disparities:|
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The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program provides cash to meet basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter for aged, blind or disabled people with little or no income. Benefits issued by the federal government can be supplemented with additional state contributions (SSA).
Social insurance programs such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are widely used by governments to increase the income of those unable to work, such as the elderly and individuals with disabilities severe enough to prevent gainful employment. Available evidence suggests that SSI receipt can increase total household income and reduce the likelihood of child poverty (Duggan 2007a). Loss of SSI benefits has been shown to increase the likelihood of hardships such as hunger, homelessness (Norris 2003a), and unmet medical needs (Hemmeter 2011). Additional evidence is needed to confirm optimal program targeting and benefit amounts.
Application for SSI disability benefits is a function of health but is also influenced by program rules and benefits. Six states do not pay SSI supplements: Arizona, Arkansas, Mississippi, North Dakota, Tennessee, and West Virginia. The federal Social Security Administration implements SSI supplements for fourteen states; other states implement their own (SSA-SSI 2013).
Wisconsin provides an SSI supplement for those who qualify for the federal program (WI DHS-SSI).
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