Today, National Disability Institute (NDI) released the brief: Addressing the Needs of Americans with Disabilities in Financial Capability Programs, based on data from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation’s National Financial Capability Study. These findings identify challenges to financial well-being for people with disabilities that go above and beyond the challenges faced by others with similar incomes.
Americans with disabilities face significant barriers to financial wellness. They are less likely than those without disabilities to be employed, and more likely to have low incomes, experience difficulty in making ends meet, have past due medical bills, often lack access to emergency funds, use non-bank borrowing methods and have a lower level of financial knowledge.
In recent years, public and private sector organizations have developed strategies to help lower-income populations improve their “financial literacy” and “financial capability” in order to better manage their financial lives, build and preserve assets, reduce their economic vulnerability and increase their financial well-being. Generally, these strategies combine elements of financial education with motivation strategies and one-on-one or group support. Most financial capability programs cover key issues—such as budgeting, saving, debt, credit, taxes and financial products—that are important to all populations. However, they often overlook issues specific to people with disabilities. This brief identifies those issues and highlights three innovative financial capability programs that address the specific financial needs and characteristics of people with disabilities.
A digital copy of the report is available for download in the Document Library section of NDI’s website.