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New Jersey families touched by disability struggle for basic needs

For some families in New Jersey, there is never any stress surrounding where the next meal will come from. Some kids go home and can riffle through cabinets and a refrigerator full of food. Unfortunately, this is not a luxury afforded to all. A reported 15 percent of households around the country, including her in New Jersey, experienced some struggle in providing an adequate amount of food for all family members in 2011. This is referred to as food insecurity.

Food insecurity is often a result of a household not having enough income or resources. When more investigation is conducted into the circumstances that result in a household lacking adequate resources, thereby experiencing food insecurity, it is often found that families that have an adult that suffers with a disabling condition are more prone to this condition than families that do not have a working-age adult with a disability.

When looking only at the population of households around the country that had an adult that was of working-age but prevented from being able to work because of a disability, around one in three of all of such households were made to struggle with food insecurity from 2009-2010. By way of comparison, food insecurity was found in only 12 percent of households that did not have an adult with a disability during that same time frame.

This means that households that have a working-age adult that has a disability are close to three times as likely to struggle with food insecurity. Often these households have to account for additional medical costs and accommodations, which can result in a significant financial strain.

To alleviate some of this financial strain, many individuals that struggle with a disability and are unable to work will seek to receive benefits from Social Security Disability Insurance. An experienced attorney can assist an individual with this aim in order to live a more secure life.

Source: USDA Blog, "Disability Is an Important Risk Factor for Food Insecurity," Alisha Coleman-Jensen, Feb. 12, 2013

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