Social security is very essential for most of today s older Americans. Since it was begun, it has been a sort of protection for retired workers, and for disabled workers. Social Security allows people to live independently and still have their dignity. There are about 150 million workers protected by Social security and more then 44 million people receive Social Security benefits. The Social Security program is a way of providing an economic security in today s society. More than 9 in 10 older Americans get Social Security each month. Without Social Security almost half of the senior citizens would live in poverty, while now, with Social Security, the poverty percentage is only 11 percent. For almost two thirds of the elderly, Social Security is their major source of income, for a third of the elderly Social Security is their only income.
The main reason for Social Security s financial problem is based on life span. We re living longer and healthier lives. When Social security was created in 1935, a 65-year-old had an average life expectancy of 12 + more years, today its 17 + and rising. Also, 76 million baby boomers will start to retire in about 2010, and in about 30 years there will about twice as many older Americans are there be today. Also, at the same time the number of people working to contribute to Social Security will drop from 3.3 to 2.
Many people think that their Social Security tax contributions are held in their own accounts for their own retirement needs, but their not. The Social Security we pay today goes to aid the retirees of today. Soon the number of retirees will out number the amount of people working and the funds for Social Security will diminish.
I have proposed two plans in which we may be able to save Social Security.
1) The retirement age for full Social Security benefits should be raised further. Americans are living longer and are healthier then ever before. This means they are spending more and more time on Social Security then they have ever done before. If the retirement age is raised, there will be a greater number of people in the working force that will increase the amount of money going into Social Security. Since the age limit would be raised, fewer people would be on Social Security while more people would be working, which would hopefully create a surplus more years to come.
2) I think that Social Security taxes should be raised. If this was done, the amount collected from taxes might be able to replenish Social Security funds, and provide money for upcoming retirees. This would help solve the problems with the expected diminishment of Social Security funds from the upcoming retirement of the baby boomers.