Disability, Survivors

On Patriot Day, We Remember

September 9, 2016 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: September 9, 2016

911 pic

Social Security provides survivors and disability insurance for workers and their families. Through times of tragedy and despair, we’ve risen with the American spirit to provide support to those we serve. Like few other times in our history, was our agency’s presence needed more than after the terrorists’ attacks of September 11, 2001.

Fifteen years have gone by but that tragic day is still present in our memories and hearts. We remember where we were and what we were doing when our nation was forever changed. We remember the innocent lives lost. We remember the courage of the first responders who risked, and even lost their lives to save others. And at that time, we remembered our commitment to be with you through life’s journey, helping secure today and tomorrow.

Social Security’s immediate response to the terrorist attacks was to put in place special emergency procedures to provide the fastest possible service to the families of the victims of the tragedies at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and in Pennsylvania.

These procedures expedited the processing of claims for victims and their families. We amended the documents we accepted for proof of death to include things like airplane manifests, lists of employees provided by employers, and other statements that showed the worker at the scene of the attacks. Social Security employees helped families at special assistance centers opened in New York, Arlington, VA, and Pennsylvania. The strength of our nation was present in our employees’ dutiful and heartfelt service.

The first payments to surviving family members went out on October 3, 2001. Since then, our agency has been a constant support for the surviving families and disabled victims.

Today, Social Security provides more than $8 million in benefits each month to the more than 6,000 beneficiaries who were disabled, their dependents, and the survivors of those who died because of the attacks.

As we remember those we lost, let’s also keep in mind those they left behind. You can find more information about the benefits available to September 11 victims and families by visiting the Victims Compensation Fund. You can also read How Social Security Can Help When a Family Member Dies for more information on our survivors benefits.

Did you find this Information helpful?

Thanks for your feedback!


See Comments

About the Author

Doug Walker, Deputy Commissioner, Communications

Deputy Commissioner, Office of Communications


  1. Tony S.

    Social Security Amendments of January 1, 2016 http://www.title24uscode.org/ss1.htm

    To legislate a 2.4% DI tax rate to pay for a 6% COLA for calendar year 2017 and 2.2% DI tax rate and 3% COLA every year thereafter.

    To amend the DI tax rate from 1.80% in 2015, to 2.37% in 2016, to 2.40% in 2017, to 2.20% in 2018 to when all the Baby Boomer shall have retired. To increase the 0.9% DI tax in 2015 to 1.2% DI tax for employees and employers in 2017 and 1.1% in 2018 under Sec. 201(b)(1)(S) of the Social Security Act 42USC(7)II§401.

    To amend the OASI tax rate from 10.60% in 2015, to 10.03% in 2016, to 10.00% in 2017 and 10.20% in 2018 and thereafter to prevent the DI fund from being depleted and OASI Trust Fund from premature deficit. To increase the 5.30% OASI tax in 2015 to 5.00% in 2017, to 5.10% in 2018, for employees and employers under 26USC(C)(21)(A)§3111 (a) without increasing the overall 12.4% OASDI or 15.3% OASDI and Hospital Insurance (HI) Federal Insurance Contribution Act tax-rate under 26USC(A)(2)§1401.

    To pay a 6% Cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) 2017 to compensate for the theft of the 2016 COLA and 3% COLA every year thereafter to protect benefit determination from attrition by average estimated inflation of 2.6% in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) under Sec. 215(i) of the Social Security Act 42USC§415(i).

  2. Chris

    Instead of making political statements one could choose to remember how united we were during the 9/11 aftermath and seek to recover that and show respect for the victims, the survivors, the first responders and honoring their memories this weekend simply by being kind to one another. Do an act of kindness for someone…it could be something as simple as a smile and hello, have a nice day.

    I worked that day and the days after were filled with speaking with people directly affected, people not knowing whether their loved ones and friends had survived. Those days and many of those conversations are forever etched in my mind. One elderly gentleman who had been estranged from his son and only knew his last known whereabouts to be in NYC was so despondent. I worked within the confines of the law to see if we had received any notices and checked the victims lists only to find nothing which for him was a good thing. I will always wonder if they were able to reconnect.

    Be kind to one another…underneath all the differences is a human being just like you and I. Peace to all.

    • ttaems

      amen!! united…not divided…as a country…as human beings…hatred needs to be put away…kindness can go a long wayyyyy…forever!

    • Collyn

      Nice post Chris. Yes, be kind to one another…

  3. Dean

    It’s a mistake to vote HILLARY!!
    We all need to vote for Trump. USA, USA, USA!!!

  4. thomas

    President Trump will be good for the American people, We have been neglected far too long by the present administration and many past ones.

  5. mary

    Time for more compassion… even if we are poor and broken. I understand anger and all those feelings… please don’t let the idea of caring for others make you upset. We would do it for you if we could. And by the way, thank you… SSI, American taxpayers, people who have so much courage. EVerybody is brave in some way.

  6. Michael L.

    It’s been a long time since we had a COLA increase. For those of us with disabilities, SS is a privilege to receive. But it’s getting nearly impossible to keep up with the rise in prices of virtually everything without a raise next January. Thanks for listening.

  7. Lic. P.

    It’s a reality the poverty rise so much in our country since many years ago. It’s important that the public servers think in our necessity first, and later oversea.
    The work of SSA is very important for all, because there are many vulnerable people here.


    • Retiree

      No one will live in poverty, if they make an effort to get a good paying job. Poor people expect us to provide for them, so who will provide for us?

      • Dee

        And where are these good paying jobs?

        • Tom

          Poorly paying jobs are growing around the world. This is the result of lopsided globalization. Decades of union-busting, business-friendly legislation and anti-labor judges all the way up to the Supreme Court have insured that the US can compete with lower paid workers elsewhere in a steadily downward spiral. Something neither party seems interested in reversing because of the lobbying and donations from the businesses that stand to gain by saving money at the expense of our society and economy.

      • Gemmiestar

        There are many people who live in poverty for various reason. Many living in poverty have worked extremely hard, with a good salary, but have bad life experiences. Just look at the housing market, especially in Arizona. Many seniors where counting on the equity from their homes to provide for their retirement. If you add losing this huge amount of home equity, plus a sickness, and… not to mention disgustingly high property taxes, who is living comfortably, and…almost in poverty. We should all appreciate our lifestyle and income. Neither is guaranteed forever. Your comment don’t apply to everyone. Bad things happen to good, hardworking, well paid people. Not everyone will receive an inheritance from a love one to bail them out either.

  8. Nick T.

    Thank You !!!

  9. George A.

    Am humbled to have another identify in names of Admiral George Anderson.

  10. Susan i.

    Let’s hope that Saudi Arabia reimburses the US taxpayers for this money. 15 of the 19 hijackers were citizens of Saudi Arabia. Congress just passed a law allowing US survivors and their families to sue Saudi Arabia. Of course, President Obama plans to veto the legislation. Why should Saudi Arabia pay when the US has the SSA to use taxpayer money to compensate these unfortunate families. America pays and pays for what other countries do to us. There’s no need for Saudi Arabia to pay for their bad deeds against our country. That would make them really, really mad at us! 132 days and counting until we have a new President. It has been a very long time coming!!

    • Dee

      I cannot wait for President Hillary Clinton to take office.

      • carol

        vote Trump!!!!!

      • Tom

        You are as sick as Hillary and Obama. Learn from historical mistakes.

      • thomas

        god forbid if she takes office

    • Tom

      The days of the US determining what applies to the rest of the world are over…no matter who is president. Any precedent we establish will also apply to us. With the USA being involved in foreign wars, terrorist attacks and many covert activities, we would be subject to potentially paying a lot more than Saudi Arabia would. While the desire for revenge and restitution are human and understandable, the consequences must be thought through.

      • Tom

        anti-terrorist attacks, sorry!

      • OLATUNJI A.

        U.S. doesn’t help the world, U.S. helps its friends. If you don’t help your friend at the time of need, then you are a bad friend. A good friend is always ready to help his or her friends. That is how we know a reliable and trustworthy friend.

Comments are closed.