People in Charleston recognize that there are a considerable number of very physically-demanding jobs in West Virginia, but they may not realize that it has resulted in West Virginia having the highest percentage of people on disability benefits. Approximately 9 percent of the West Virginia population between 18- and 64-years-old was receiving Social Security disability insurance benefits in 2010. This is compared to 2.8 percent of the populations in the states with the lowest rates.
So what is causing such a high number of people relying on disability benefits? Not only do West Virginians have a higher chance of being disabled, but there has been an overall increase in people applying for and receiving benefits. In fact, there has been a 23 percent increase in the number of recipients since 2007.
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