Asset Development

Web Resources on Asset Development for Persons with Disabilities

 Real Economic Impact Tour (REI Tour) is a national initiative designed to assist low-income people with disabilities by providing them with asset-building strategies. The REI Tour offers free tax preparation and filing assistance to qualified individuals. During 2008, the REI Tour partners prepared over 90,000 tax returns in 62 cities, resulting in refunds of over $81 million dollars to persons with disabilities.  The REI Tour will take place in 84 cities in 2009.

A paper titled
 Advancing Self-Sufficiency for Medicaid Beneficiaries: Meeting the Challenges of the Olmstead Integration Mandate  by Michael Morris, director of the National Disability Institute, discusses the unique challenges faced by Medicaid recipients when they try to become economically self-sufficient and reside within their community. The report identifies strategies that can be used to allow individuals with disabilities to produce, preserve, and grow their assets.

The IRS Stakeholder Partnerships Education and Communication (SPEC) program’s goal is to assist low-income taxpayers in meeting their tax obligations, and to provide information regarding the availability of the Earned Income Tax Credit.

The Work Incentives Planning and Assistance projects are sponsored by the Social Security Administration. There are 104 projects funded throughout the country to provide SSA beneficiaries with disabilities assistance on job placement, benefits planning, and career development so that SSA beneficiaries can make informed decisions regarding employment options. A similar program designed for residents of California is Disability Benefits 101.

Money Smart
is an FDIC curriculum developed for use by youth and adults to teach financial literacy to those individuals that are considered to be outside of the mainstream financial market. America Saves is another similar financial literacy program. A similar program designed for residents of New York is Credit Where Credit is Due.

Nonprofit organizations that provide technical assistance and conduct research in the area of Asset Development for individuals with low incomes, including persons with disabilities, include the National Disability Institute, the Burton Blatt Institute, the Center for Community Economic Development and Disabilities, the New American Foundation, the Corporation for Enterprise Development, and the World Institute on Disability.

Posted October 29, 2008