Disability, General, Retirement

Save Our Cities

August 4, 2016 • By

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Last Updated: August 19, 2021

Urban LeagueSocial Security is here to secure today and tomorrow. We’re the only federal agency that touches every aspect of your life from birth through retirement to death and beyond, helping to care for your surviving family. Part of this commitment is our active participation and presence in our communities.

The National Urban League is holding its annual convention August 3 to 6, 2016, in Baltimore, MD, home of Social Security headquarters. The National Urban League is a historic civil rights organization dedicated to improving the standard of living and economic opportunities for people in urban communities in the United States.

Carolyn W. Colvin, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, will be a guest speaker at the National Council of Urban League Guilds Leadership Luncheon on Friday, August 5. The acting commissioner will highlight Social Security’s programs and benefits, and the importance of planning for retirement.

A secure, comfortable retirement can be in your future if you start planning early. We have tools to help you begin planning today. Our Retirement Planner lets you find your ideal retirement age, estimate your retirement benefits and calculate the amount of benefits you will receive at different ages. You can discover your retirement options, find out how your dependents may qualify for benefits, and what supporting documents they may need.

Your personal my Social Security account is another invaluable asset to help you plan for retirement. You can get your Social Security Statement with estimates of your future retirement, disability, and survivors benefits. If you are ready for retirement, you can file for benefits online and begin your that new phase of your life, today!

That’s not all you can do online and with your personal my Social Security account. Social Security online services will guide you into retirement and beyond. Learn more on our website.

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About the Author

Stacy Rodgers, Chief of Staff, Social Security Administration

Stacy Rodgers, Chief of Staff, Social Security Administration


  1. Manuel S.

    Social Security funds were dipped into by our government administration and our self serving politicians; and they never replaced the funds they took out. All the other issues argued here seem to only turn one against another. Point the finger to Obama giving Iran $400 Million Dollars for nothing, money used against our troops, cutting our Military and rendering America even more vulnerable in the past 8 years. Lets Unite, rather than fight each other in this blog. Have a greater Consciousness of Mind and compassion for your fellow citizens.

    • Ray F.

      Manuel, Social Security is a pay-as-you-go system. Social Security taxes collected from today’s workers pay the benefits of today’s retirees. Any funds in excess of what is needed to pay today’s benefits are invested in special issue, U.S. Government, interest-bearing securities. This investment – the purchase of U.S. Government securities – is what constitutes the “borrowing” that people are sometimes concerned about. Any funds that have been “borrowed” from the Social Security Trust Funds have always been paid back in full, plus interest. Please check out our Trust Fund Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.

      • Susan

        Invested in safe, government securities. And because our government has sold these securities to fund our national debt, it is in the government’s best interest to keep interest rates as low as humanly possible. Our Federal Reserve is supposed to be independent body managing the economy in the best interests of its people. Instead, they are managing for the best interests of Wall Street and the Government. If interest rates go up, which would be great for people trying to live off of interest on their savings, then the amount the government would have to pay of those securities will go up. And to whom does the US Govt owe all that money? China and other foreign governments. So if you are saying the SSA is growing and thriving on the interest they are earning on government securities, you are sadly mistaken. Why do you think the actuaries are calling for insolvency for 2034? Because the interest on government securities is almost nothing. Government caused this shortfall and now they have caused an economic situation that makes it impossible to pay back the money.

  2. Retiree

    It feels great to get social security, but I knew that wouldn’t be enough to make it when I was going to retire, so I worked for a company that had a pension plan. You have to think about getting as much as you were earning because a social security check isn’t enough, if you don’t own your own home and have to pay rent monthly.

  3. ben

    What’s going on with the new procedure to log into your account. Are they going to get rid of having to have a texting phone to gain access or just block out the people who don’t have one. Another great program screw up by the OBAMA administration who don’t care about the regular people.



  5. Susan

    Now SSA is in the business of giving speeches at partisan political events like the Urban League Convention….a “civil rights” organization with a mantra of SAVE OUR CITIES…..are you kidding me? What on earth could this convention possibly have to do with the mission of SSA? I’ll tell you what the mission is….for SSA to become the NANNY of every person in this country, from cradle to grave and beyond. SSA is going broke….they need to do less community outreach in their quest to be all things to all people. THEY DON’T HAVE THE MONEY TO DO THIS!!!! SSA is like a crack dealer….get the people hooked and then the taxpayers will HAVE TO KEEP THEM HOOKED. Where has our great country gone? Our founding Fathers are crying at what has become of this country after all their hard work and spilled blood.

    • Doral

      How do you know what our founding fathers are thinking? It seems it is you who is crying over your misguided images of SS. The message in bright lights here was that young and older workers alike need to plan for retirement, including personal retirement savings, that can be combined with SS modest funds to meet cost of living in expenses when retirement or medical disability comes your way. This is a message to be shared with the members of the Urban Leage, in order that those members return to their home communities and encourage others to better plan for their retirement. I know that SS monthly payments now are modest and do not cover the totality of today’s living costs. Likewise, disability payments are modest too. This is contrary to your impressions of SS being a nanny from cradle to grave. SS helps meet people’s basic human living costs when they have limited alternatives due to medical disability or limitations due to old age.

      • Susan

        If you don’t know what the Founding Fathers would think of this SSA racket, then you don’t know much about the founding of this country. Perhaps you are too young and the education system was already devoid of the politically incorrect story of the founding of this once great country. Did you read the first paragraph of the article, Doral? This is where I got the idea that SSA thinks their mission is to provide help cradle to grave. First sentence says “Social Security is here to secure today and tomorrow.” Really, is that what you think of when you think about Social Security’s role in your life? Just think, if you and I could have a choice to keep the money that we and our employers are forced to contribute rather than give it to government, we really wouldn’t need the government doling out our money according to their rules. If some people want the government to take care of them, fine….let the government take your money and give it back to you on their terms. Have you noticed that most of the comments on this website are from people who complain about not getting enough benefits from the government? How is it that baby boomers and their parents got the impression that SSA was going to provide everything they need and want in old age? They got that idea from FDR and every succeeding Democratic President. They lied. Now they have a band of 60,000 SSA workers out beating the bushes telling people that SSA will save them. You act like SSA is helping people by giving them money to live on. Have you forgotten that the money didn’t come from the government….it came from the employees and their employers. How dare you take an attitude that SSA is “giving” people anything. It’s their money!!

        • DrGonzo888

          You are taking that first sentence way too literally. They are saying what could happen or when it could be needed. A lot of people do not know about survivors benefits and the like. SHAME on them for telling people. Yes benefits are not large sums of money at retirement, they were not meant to be. It was meant to supplement the other retirement plans a person had in place. If you didn’t and chose to rely on SSA, then that’s on you.

          In regards to letting people keep the money and invest it ? 1) most wouldn’t sadly 2) We are recovering for a sever economic crash, one that would of basically bankrupted those privately invested funds for the middle class.

          To make fun of others for not knowing “politically incorrect history” is a joke when you don’t know what you are speaking of either.

        • Chris

          Susan Susan Susan… Social Security was NEVER meant to be the sole source of income for retirement. It is meant as a supplement for your other retirement investments whether it be the stock market, 401K, IRA’s etc. There are many who DO rely on it unfortunately as their sole source of retirement who did not have the wherewithal to do that just as those who seem to cry the loudest are more concerned with keeping up with the Jones rather than building up other retirement options. For the Jones crowd it is poor planning, for those lower income families Social Security is a blessing and even though often not enough it does help.
          It will always exist and the best way to keep it funded is to lift the cap on earnings. Have a good day…anger and hate are not healthy for anyone.

          • Susan

            So, when someone expresses a dissenting opinion, it’s anger and hate. You must not have mis-read my comment and I know it is sometimes difficult to follow the thread of comments and replied. I know SSA contributions will not cover all retirement expenses. I think I was expressing the fact that many of the people who post to this blog seem to think it should. Anyway, SSA is a mess and raising caps might help, but perhaps some cuts are in order. I know Congress has to pass changes to the law, but do we really need to provide burial expenses? Do we really need to let people double-dip the system. Apply for my half my husband’s retirement while still working and then switching to my own benefits when I’m 70 and can collect the maximum amount? There are lots of problems. But I don’t think that just because there are some people who don’t want to save for their retirements and prefer to get SSA that I should have to contribute if I don’t want to collect SSA when I retire. Let SSA be a program for the economically poor, if that’s what they want. This is a no-win argument for me. There’s too many people who want the handouts and not enough people who want to take care of themselves. As long as government robs Peter to pay Paul, Paul votes to keep it that way. Our poor country;(

    • cynthia B.

      Amen, SSA Thieves n Killers

  6. Lea B.

    Dear Stacy,
    I live in a rural town in a community that is over 75% aged 65 or older, I am 45, I am a widow, I have a 10 year old child. I have been a victim of identity theft and lost everything several times in my life. I have been trying to get help with my daughters benefits as well as a few I am actually entitled to but was told I would never be allowed to receive by the Social Security Administration when my husband passed away in 2008. Recently I became homeless again and after fleeing to the most remote area to find sanctuary in order to protect myself and my child, I cannot find anyone within your organization who will help us. Yesterday I drove 187 miles to go get my daughters benefit check only to find out the office was closed. So why is there not a benefit location anywhere west of Georgetown, Austin, or Santonio Texas?
    I might be a bit out of my league in asking but, (as a mother of a small person who will someday lead this country and change every single law that allows anyone to discriminate against a widow), why won’t my elected government body place offices of Security in rural towns? I’m not asking for a lot, but this country can put men and women in space, give aid to every country on our planet, and send our sons to battle! But you fail to take care of the mother and baby of every man you kill on the battlefield!
    I have all the passion of a widows mite! And I promise you I will not give up until someone listens!
    If anyone ever lost a spouse in this country and was raised by a woman I BEG YOU TO STAND UP RIGHT NOW!

    • Glenn

      All I can say is “Direct Deposit” I am collecting SSA and have never visited an office. All was handled via phone and on line. Has nothing to do with the space program.

  7. Les G.

    My wife and I began collecting benefits four years ago, when we turned 66. We both still work at a small business we own. We have our checks direct deposited in our credit union, and do not use the money. You cannot believe how much money piles up in four years, and what comfort it brings while we navigate the difficulties of running our business (which has not been able to provide us with retirement benefits).

    • Susan

      Your post is going to make most of the people who read this blog very angry, Les. How dare you collect SSA benefits and continue to work so that you can save your SSA checks for retirement. That is not the American way, according to the people who have posted to this article. In their minds, you don’t deserve to receive SSA benefits AND have a job. They think SSA is only for people who don’t work or are disabled. They don’t seem to get it that you and your wife and your employers contributed that money and it belongs to YOU and your wife. You have learned that SSA is not enough for you and your wife to have a comfortable retirement and so you have chosen to keep working and saving for a time when you will have enough money to fund the retirement you want. That point seems to go missing on these people. All they say is “It’s not enough to live on….when is the COLA coming”. You and your wife have taken responsibility for your retirement and you’re not whining about SSA. You are winners of your own making, Les….congratulations and I wish there were more people like you out here!!

  8. Lic. P.

    It’s a reality that the Social Security Administration touches every aspect of our lives in the United States of America. This responsibility is very sensitive for all.

    The great population of low, and very low income in our country have a big problem with the funerals services, when unfortunately a people dead. The cost of funerals services are very high. I believe that the Social Security Administration must be study this sensitive problem in order to help about it.


    • Tom

      This reflects a common misunderstanding about the basic operation of government. SSA’s rules and regulation were enacted by Congress or based on direction provided in their legislation. SSA can no sooner raise the amount of the burial expense than they can just raise your benefit payments without violating either the law or the intent of Congress. While your complaint has great merit, directing at people who cannot do anything to create the change will not provide the result you wish. Congress never tied the burial expense to inflation and so it remains the same amount as it was when enacted.

  9. Joey

    Wish I had seen this when I was younger. I’m retired now and living on my SSA, and it’s not enough. You should try to reach young people and even older people that are still working

    • Marilyn K.

      Social Security is not a retirement fund. It was set up to be, and still is, a SUPPLEMENT to whatever monies you saved through the years for your retirement. It is not meant for you to live on as your only income in your retirement years.

  10. Andy H.

    I am so happy that SSA is giving out this message. the perception has always been for folks under 40 that Social Security is just for “old people”. I tell my workshop audiences how I got survivor benefits as a young person when my dad died. My oldest son has cancer and is applying for disability. As you know one in four young people will become disabled before they reach retirement age.

    • tony

      Social Security is going broke in 2034. Those folks under 40 won’t even see their full retirement benefits. The best way to get your money back from the ponzi scheme is to go on disability now.

      • Ray F.

        The Annual Trustees Report shows that, as a whole, Social Security is fully funded until 2034, and after that it is about three-quarters financed. Considered alone, the DI Trust Fund is projected to become depleted sooner than the combined Social Security funds. Legislation signed into law by President Obama last November averted a near-term shortfall in DI. With that small, temporary reallocation of the Social Security contribution rate, the DI fund will now be able to pay full benefits until 2023, and the retirement fund alone will be adequate into 2035. It is important that Congress act well before 2023 in order to strengthen the finances of the program as a whole. Social Security’s independent actuaries have analyzed over 100 policy proposals from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, and those results are available on the Actuary’s website. Thanks !

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