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Five Years, $45 Million Saved By People Experiencing Disabilities

Improved financial security for thousands of vulnerable Oregonians participating in ABLE savings plans

SALEM, Ore., Dec. 7, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- As we mark the five-year anniversary of the Oregon ABLE and national ABLE for ALL Savings Plans, the programs are celebrating another key milestone—$45 million saved by more than 4,500 people experiencing a disability. Because of ABLE, thousands of Oregonians and savers from across the U.S. are now on the path to financial security, with the average account size reaching a new high of $10,000, and $18 million contributed to ABLE accounts so far in 2021.

ABLE has a critical role to play in empowering the disability community to strive for their goals & pursue their dreams.

"The last five years have given us plenty of reasons to celebrate," said Oregon State Treasurer Tobias Read. "The number of Oregonians improving their day to day lives and saving for the future through ABLE accounts continues to grow. This program has a critical role to play in empowering the disability community to strive for their long-term goals and pursue their dreams."

The anniversary of Oregon's ABLE programs coincides with the seven-year anniversary of the federal Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act, signed into law in 2014, that allowed states to create savings plans for people with disabilities.

Before Congress and the Oregon State Legislature paved the way for the creation of ABLE plans, people living with disabilities were functionally forced to live in poverty if they wanted to remain eligible for benefits like Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income, which required the individual to have less than $2,000 in their name. Now, under state and federal programs, ABLE funds can be used for anything that improves quality of life—without jeopardizing benefits.

"As a financial coach, I have seen the option of an ABLE account remove fear of saving and replace it with a great measure of relief. The relief of knowing that saving for what you need and accessing supports on which you depend are no longer in conflict," said Allison Barber, Financial Coach at Northwest Access Fund. "I have less conversations about the implications of rushed and impulsive spending necessitated by the need to avoid being over-resourced. This is replaced by a conversation around mindful saving for future needs and goals."

Oregon ABLE is a state-sponsored savings program that allows people with disabilities and their families to save money for day-to-day expenses and future needs without disqualifying them from critical state and federal benefits www.oregonABLEsavings.com.

Contact: Kasey Krifka kasey.krifka@ost.state.or.us   503-431-7976

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SOURCE Oregon ABLE Savings Plan