AgrAbility Helps Ag Workers with Disabilities Succeed



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disability, AgrAbility Helps Ag Workers with Disabilities Succeed
The AgrAbility program helped Indiana farmer Ed Bell modify his tractor so he can continue working the land. (Photo courtesy of Paul Jones)

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural workers have one of the most dangerous occupations in America, suffering more fatal work injuries each year than most other professions. There were 570 fatalities in 2015 and even more debilitating injuries.

Agricultural workers with disabilities are often unable to continue working in a manner they are accustomed to, resulting in reduced productivity and increased chance of secondary injury. But with the help of AgrAbility, many of these professionals are able to put their knowledge and expertise back into the field.

The AgrAbility program at USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) enhances the quality of life for agricultural workers with disabilities by funding educational programs that advance their knowledge of farm safety, educate health professionals, and adapt new technologies for farmers with disabilities.

State/Regional AgrAbility Projects (SRAPs) are projects in which state cooperative extension services at land-grant institutions and non-profit organizations work together at the state and regional levels to meet the needs of agricultural workers with disabilities. NIFA currently supports 20 SRAPs.

The National AgrAbility Project (The National AgrAbility Project (NAP), hosted by Purdue University, supports the SRAPs as they develop and deliver core…