BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – A recent report by United For ALICE and Louisiana Association of United Ways paints a bleak picture for those living with disabilities in Louisiana.

“The number of people with disabilities in Louisiana who struggle to afford the basics is far higher than federal poverty data indicates — 60% compared to 24%,” according to United For ALICE.

The report titled, The ALICE in Focus: People With Disabilities produced various findings including those listed below:

  • Black and Hispanic residents with disabilities — 75% and 54% respectively —disproportionately experienced financial hardship compared to 52% of white people with disabilities.
  • Females with disabilities struggled more to afford the basics — 62% — compared to 56% of males with disabilities.
  • Louisiana saw 29% of residents with disabilities below the ALICE Threshold spend 35% or more of their income on their mortgage, plus utilities, taxes and insurance.
  • Whether working full or part time, people with disabilities were more likely to be living paycheck to paycheck than those without disabilities: 37% of full-time workers with disabilities were below the ALICE Threshold compared to 26% of full-time workers without disabilities.

“ALICE households earn more than the Federal Poverty Level but less than what it costs to live and work in the modern economy,” according to United for ALICE.

So what can be done to help those who are living under these conditions?

Earlier this year, Capital Area United Way started a project grant process that focused in on those who live under the conditions mentioned above.

According to United for ALICE, “Eligible non-profit organizations, including those serving persons with disabilities in the ALICE population, are encouraged to apply through August 12th.”

Information about the Capital Area United Way grants can be found here.

“On the 32nd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, we see that residents with physical, mental or emotional conditions who are struggling financially are not only being undercounted but underserved,” said United For ALICE National Director Stephanie Hoopes, Ph.D. “There is still work to do as having a disability puts individuals at substantial risk for financial instability, more than many other factors. Daily, and even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic, these individuals face barriers to accessing a quality education, secure jobs and critical supports.”