Top Ten Facts About Social Security
We’ve updated our popular “Top Ten Facts About Social Security,” a highly successful program that marked its 77th birthday this summer:
- Social Security is more than just a retirement program. It provides important life insurance and disability insurance protection as well.
- Social Security provides a guaranteed, progressive benefit that keeps up with increases in the cost of living.
- Social Security provides a foundation of retirement protection for nearly every American, and its benefits are not means-tested
- Social Security benefits are modest.
- Children have an important stake in Social Security.
- Almost half of the elderly would be poor without Social Security. Social Security lifts 14 million elderly Americans out of poverty.
- Most elderly beneficiaries rely on Social Security for the majority of their income. (See graph.)
- Social Security is particularly important for minorities.
- Social Security is especially beneficial for women.
- Social Security can pay full benefits through 2033 without any changes. Relatively modest changes would place the program on a sound financial footing for the next 75 years and beyond.