Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a cash benefit program for individuals — both children and adults — who have a qualifying disability and meet income, asset, and immigration status requirements.
SSI provides monthly payments to adults and children who have blindness or another physical or mental condition that seriously limits their functioning (e.g., their ability to participate in school and activities of daily living at an age-appropriate level) and who have income and resources below specific limits. SSI payments are also made to people aged 65 and older without disabilities who meet the income and resource qualifications.
Increasing access for SSI-eligible children by identifying policy options and providing tools and resources to help people navigate the SSI application and determination process represents an opportunity for decision makers and other partners to lift children and families above the poverty line. Research shows that SSI can lift nearly half of participants out of poverty; without the program, the child poverty rate would increase by 14.8%.
ChangeLab Solutions has created a suite of resources that can help policymakers better understand the administration of the SSI program and opportunities to better prime families for successful applications and appeals.