Supplemental Security Income Recipients Affected by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: An Analysis of Two Years of Administrative Data
Paul S. Davies, U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA)
Jeffrey Hemmeter, U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA)
We use administrative data to study Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients in the counties affected by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in August 2005. Poor, elderly, and disabled SSI recipients were potentially the hardest hit by the hurricanes. While relocation and rebuilding may have opened employment opportunities for those able to work, the disruption in health supports and loss of assets may have forced recipients to become more attached to the program. Recipients in August 2005 are followed through August 2007. Outcomes such as SSI status, geographic location, and earnings are analyzed, focusing on characteristics including age group, gender, living arrangements, and type of impairment. Preliminary estimates from August 2006 show wide variability in the outcomes of SSI recipients in the affected counties. By comparing these outcomes with those of recipients in counties not affected by the hurricanes, we will estimate how the hurricanes affected SSI recipients.