Statement of Commissioner Astrue Regarding Extension of Funding for Return-to-Work Programs to Assist People with Disabilities
“I want to thank Congress and President Obama for the recent passage of the WIPA and PABSS Reauthorization Act of 2009. The bill extends funding authorization for the Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA) and the Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS) programs through fiscal year 2010.
There are currently 103 WIPA programs across the U.S. working with Social Security disability beneficiaries on job placement, benefits planning, and career development. With this vital support, beneficiaries are better equipped to make informed choices about work. The PABSS program provides much-needed advocacy services that help beneficiaries navigate through an often-confusing web of Employment Networks, Social Security rules, legal issues, and employment issues. I anticipate a continuing need and increased demand for both WIPA and PABSS services, and the extension of funding allows the opportunity to further evaluate these important programs.”
For more information about these programs and the Ticket to Work program, please see www.socialsecurity.gov/work.
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