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Adults with Disabilities Remain Outside Economic Mainstream

Published: 2017-04-28 - Updated: 2018-03-15
Author: National Disability Institute - Contact:
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Synopsis: NDI report finds since the ADA was signed into law individuals with disabilities still face numerous hurdles and roadblocks to financial inclusion.

New report highlights the banking status and financial behavior of people with disabilities.

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New report highlights the banking status and financial behavior of people with disabilities.


The National Disability Institute (NDI) has just released a new report titled Banking Status and Financial Behaviors of Adults with Disabilities: Findings from the 2015 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households. The report finds that, in the 27 years since the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law, ensuring all individuals with disabilities the opportunity to achieve "economic self-sufficiency," this population still faces numerous financial hurdles and roadblocks to financial inclusion.

Based on data mined from the 2015 FDIC National Survey on Unbanked and Underbanked Households, this insightful report highlights the financial choices and banking habits of adults with disabilities. This is the second report, based on FDIC data, that NDI has released in two years.

"Americans with disabilities face unique financial obstacles and challenges that separate them from their peers without disabilities," National Disability Institute Executive Director, Michael Morris, said. "With the release of this report, we now have a clearer picture of the challenges they face, but also the significant opportunities to design solutions." Continued Mr. Morris, "It is essential that policymakers, financial institutions and community organizations rally around the report's findings and recommendations, and begin to work together to ensure equal access and financial inclusion for people across the spectrum of disabilities."

The report findings provide an important lens on the financial choices and decision-making of Americans with disabilities. Report highlights include:

National Disability Institute released the report findings during a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. Mr. Morris, and researcher and co-author, Nanette Goodman, presented the report highlights. FDIC Senior Financial Economist, Division of Depositor and Consumer Protection, Ryan Goodstein, provided an overview and historical perspective of the agency's 2015 National Survey.

Two panels discussed the findings of the report and gave recommendations.

The first panel, of federal agency representatives, discussed various strategies and policy recommendations to reverse the report's findings, as well as their work to advance the financial capability of people with disabilities. Panelists included Janet Gordon, Associate Director, Community Affairs, FDIC; Don Dill, Senior Tax Analyst, Stakeholder Partnerships, Education and Communication (SPEC), IRS; and Jennifer Kemp, Director, Division of Youth Services, Employment & Training Administration (ETA), U.S. Department of Labor.

The second panel, of individuals with disabilities, provided context for the findings of the report from their own personal experiences. Panelists included Oscar Jimenez-Solomon, Research Coordinator, Columbia University; Donna Walton, Founder and CEO, LEGGTalk, Inc.; and Howard Rosenblum, Chief Executive Officer, National Association of the Deaf.

A digital copy of the report is available for download in the resources section of the NDI website


This quality-reviewed article relating to our U.S. Disability Loans and Grants section was selected for publishing by the editors of Disabled World due to its likely interest to our disability community readers. Though the content may have been edited for style, clarity, or length, the article "Adults with Disabilities Remain Outside Economic Mainstream" was originally written by National Disability Institute, and published by on 2017-04-28 (Updated: 2018-03-15). Should you require further information or clarification, National Disability Institute can be contacted at Disabled World makes no warranties or representations in connection therewith.

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