TWorking when you’re disabled is a great way to maintain your independence. Despite this, only 21% of the disabled US population is employed, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As being disabled is connected to an increased risk of poverty, insecure housing, and social isolation, getting a job if you can is the ideal way to combat these issues. So, let’s find out more about the advantages of working when you’re living with a disability.
Preventing social isolation
Studies have shown that people with disabilities are significantly more likely to be socially isolated compared to people without disabilities. Social isolation can impact your mental health and increase your chances of depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. It has also been tied to chronic medical conditions. Having a job to regularly go to is a great way to keep you socially involved with others as the average business employs 22 people. Even if you take a remote job, you’ll have plenty of social opportunities, including over the phone, by email, and via online meetings.
Most people with disabilities receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The average SSDI monthly payment is $1,358.30 while SSI comes in at an average of $568.13. In the majority of states, these benefits only cover between 40% and 50% of a typical household’s living costs. For this reason, securing a job and bringing in additional income is recommended. By doing this, you’ll become more financially stable which lowers your risk of poverty. You’ll also be more financially independent which can help you improve your credit score, save for a rainy day, and reduce your stress levels. Jobs that often work well for people with disabilities are roles within the public sector, remote positions, and finance jobs.
Improving your housing stability
Having a disability raises your risk of housing insecurity due to things such as renting, low income, and lack of support. Housing insecurity is dangerous as it can prevent you from accessing crucial health care. By having a job and a stable income, you’ll confidently be able to pay your rent every month and should be able to continue to pay it as and when it rises. Having colleagues and an employer to support you also lowers the chance of housing insecurity. Two-thirds of people are extremely or very satisfied with the people they work with. Your colleagues will come from all walks of life and will be able to advise and assist you with any help you need. Meanwhile, your employer can provide references to help you secure a home. They’re also likely to have a mental health or wellness support program that can aid you if you’re going through a tricky time with a landlord or similar.
After being diagnosed with a disability, it’s normal to think that you can’t work. But this isn’t the case. More employers than ever before are hiring disabled candidates and it’s one of the best things you can do for your wellbeing and your finances.