If you ask anyone who has successfully obtained Social Security Disability benefits, they will likely tell you that it is definitely not like unemployment. The process of applying for benefits and then, if necessary, appealing the initial denial, waiting for a hearing, and eventually being approved is substantially more demanding and difficult.
A recent news article discusses the "disability belt" that stretches across some of the eastern part of the nation. One characteristic is that much of the area described is rural. As with the article that focused on the south earlier this month, this report found that many people in these areas have difficulty finding work. This leads many to believe that SSD is simply where these people turn when their unemployment benefits run out.