Experiences of State Vocational Rehabilitation agencies with the Ticket to Work program
by Bonnie O'Day and Grant Revell
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This article describes the experience of State Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies (SVRAs) with the Ticket to Work (TTW) program. We examined administrative data from the Social Security Administration and the Rehabilitation Services Administration and conducted site visits and telephone interviews with SVRA officials in 25 states as part of a five-year evaluation of the TTW program.
The recession of 2001–2002, along with recent financial constraints due to increased service demand and shrinking state budgets, has negatively affected TTW implementation. SVRAs have spent significant time and energy implementing TTW, particularly assigning Tickets with little apparent benefit to its clients, according to SVRA officials. They also expressed concerns about conflicts between the necessity to obtain Ticket assignments from new and existing clients to receive SSA payments under the traditional cost reimbursement system and the requirements to provide maximum consumer choice under the Rehabilitation Act. New draft regulations rescind this requirement and it remains to be seen what the future role of SVRAs in the Ticket program will be.