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Dr. Stephen McGarity Awarded Grant

Assistant Professor Dr. Stephen McGarity (Co-PI) Awarded FINRA Foundation Grant for Research on Extra Costs of Disability

Dr. Stephen McGarityNew research from Assistant Professor Dr. Stephen McGarity (pictured at right) and Dr. Zachary Morris, Assistant Professor in the School of Social Welfare at Stony Brook University, estimates that households containing an adult with a disability require, on average, 28 percent more income (or an additional $17,690 a year for a household at the median income level) to obtain the same standard of living as a comparable household without a member with a disability. People with disabilities encounter a wide range of out-of-pocket expenses. These extra expenses, which can include items like medical care, assistive technologies, special transportation, and caregiving, can weigh heavily on household finances and increase the risk of poverty.

Dr. McGarity and Dr. Morris were awarded an $88,749 grant from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation to research the economic disadvantages experienced by people with disabilities. The project consisted of additional collaborative work from Nanette Goodman, MS, Senior Researcher at National Disability Institute and Asghar Zaidi, PhD, from the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing.

The project drew on multiple national surveys to provide the first statistical estimates of the extra costs of living with a disability in the U.S. In a recently published article in the Journal of European Social Policy, Dr. Morris and Dr. Zaidi estimated the extra costs for people living with disabilities in 15 European countries. The current project extends this line of research to the United States.

The National Disability Institute, a non-profit organization that focuses on the financial health and wellbeing of people with disabilities, published a policy brief and infographic, and held public webinars in order to disseminate the research findings widely to financial planners, policy makers, and other stakeholders. The working paper, policy brief, infographic (see below), and link to the webinar can be found on NDI’s website at:  

This project was funded by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. The FINRA Foundation, established in 2003 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc., empowers underserved Americans with the knowledge, skills and tools to make sound financial decisions throughout life.

Click infographic below for full-sized version. (Opens in new window.)