Tuesday, October 21, 2014

NEA Campaigns to Strengthen Social Security

August 4, 2010 by cmccabe  
Filed under Featured News, Salary, Top Stories

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By Sara Robertson

The National Education Association has joined a campaign to protect and strengthen Social Security, joining 60 national and state labor and other organizations, including the AFL-CIO, AFSCME, National Organization of Women, NAACP, SEIU, Alliance for Retired Americans, and Moveon.org.

Those groups came together last week at the National Press Club to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Social Security and to launch the Strengthen Social Security campaign.

NEA is especially concerned about how cuts to Social Security would affect women, as women make up the vast majority of the teachers and school support professionals. More than half of Social Security beneficiaries at age 65 are women, and by age 85, women account for 71 percent of those receiving benefits. 

Anything that weakens Social Security is especially bad for educators and even more so for women, said NEA President Dennis Van Roekel.

“We have workers who have paid into the system all of their working lives, and to deny them what they deserve is simply wrong,” Van Roekel said. “We oppose any cuts to Social Security benefits. We oppose any efforts to privatize Social Security. We oppose raising the retirement age, which would hit educators hard.”

Educators, who often enter the classroom right out of college, must already work up to 45 years in their profession before they qualify for unreduced Social Security benefits. Increasing the retirement age would be a hardship for those who may not be able to handle the rigors of teaching in their later years. (Learn more about NEA’s fight for fair Social Security provisions at nea.org.)

NEA also strongly supports complete repeal of the Government Pension Offset (GPO) and the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), which penalize some public employees by cutting or eliminating Social Security benefits that they or their spouse have earned.

“We cannot keep subjecting our retirees to the GPO and WEP,” Van Roekel said. “These offsets are a double whammy. They are unfair and devastating.”

The Strengthen Social Security coalition, which represents more than 30 million Americans, says Social Security represents the best of American values — reward for hard work, honoring our parents and caring for our neighbors.

“Social Security is money that American workers paid into the system to support themselves when they reached retirement age,” Van Roekel added. “That money belongs to them, not providing it to them when they need it is wrong. We are urging all of our members to work hard to protect Social Security for all Americans.”

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4 Responses to “NEA Campaigns to Strengthen Social Security”
  1. Dennis Van Roekel is making a strong pitch for the repeal of the Windfall Elimination Provision and the Government Pension Offset. More people need to know about these penalties which currently affect 1.5 million Americans, many of whom don’t know about the cuts to their Social Security until they are about to retire. People who have worked in a second job besides a government one lose $370 a month and more of their benefits. The GPO often causes widows and widowers to lose all their spouse’s Social Security which would normally go to them when the spouse dies. Becoming a teacher in 15 of our states, after staying home for years and raising your kids, usually means that you will lose all the Social Security you are due from the years your spouse paid SS taxes from your “joint’ income. These two provisions were set up as clumsy attempts to save Social Security thirty years ago. Discouraging people from working in public employment is BAD government policy. The WEP and the GPO need to be repealed!

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  2. Those of you wanting to learn more about Social Security Fairness can go to SSFAIRNESS.COM and view our explanatory PowerPoint which is useful in understanding and/or explaining the Government Pension Offset (GPO) and Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP). This knowledge is critical in planning for financial security in retirement and also equal division of assets when divorced. It has been said that of those presently teaching in the 15 affected states the majority will be affected by one or both of these inequitable provisions at some time during their lifetime.

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  3. Lyn says:

    The NEA is/has been rubbing elbows with AFL-CIO, AFSCME, National Organization of Women, NAACP, SEIU, Alliance for Retired Americans, and Moveon.org?

    I’ve been doing research on NEA and have not liked what I’ve been learning. And now they admit to be associated with these groups which are anti-family, pro-abortion, anti-American, and anti-everything lovely praise worthy and of good report?

    Up until now, I thought the NEA took teachers’ union dues, donated it to left-wing organizations such as the above mentioned, democrat politicians, and for the NEA leadership’s 6+ figure incomes, and then in return tell the teachers how to vote and give them job protection.

    And I also knew that the NEA is against parents having a choice in education. For example, a parent’s choice to send her children to charter school. Which is wrong of the NEA to do.

    The NEA is evil.

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  4. Lyn says:

    “We have workers who have paid into the system all of their working lives, and to deny them what they deserve is simply wrong,” Van Roekel said. “We oppose any cuts to Social Security benefits. We oppose any efforts to privatize Social Security. We oppose raising the retirement age, which would hit educators hard.”

    If the teachers would find out the truth for themselves instead of being told what to think and how to vote by the NEA and their state’s affiliate, they would know that SS is broken. And it’s because there are more baby boomers than young working people nowadays. No thanks to the NOW which strongly supports abortion and having little to no children at all.

    The only way to fix SS is by privatization. But if the teachers studied the facts, they would know that it would not affect seniors today, or those approaching retirement. This is a future fix.

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