Where We Are
This spring it will be 7 years that the Committee for Social Security Fairness has been working to rid our public servants of the penalties of the Government Pension Offset and the Windfall Elimination Provision.
We have a website, ssfairness.org, which is the best source anywhere of accurate and comprehensive information on the Offsets. As we learn more and listen more to the pros and cons of repealing these onerous laws, we have developed stronger arguments for our case.
Our Alerts go out to 3,632 members, and there is a constant stream of new activists joining every day. Nearly 2,000 people like our Facebook page, (Social Security Fairness – Repeal the GPO/WEP), and that rowdy crew is always coming up with new ideas. Special thanks to Linda W.! We are everywhere: our survey last year had responses from every state, as did our White House petition of a few years ago.
Repealing the offsets is more necessary than ever. This country needs to get and to keep the best people working for the public good. Because of that, it is really hard to tell a new teacher or a proud new firefighter that his or her hard-earned pension will mean the loss of part or all of the Social Security retirement benefits that they have already earned or may earn in the future. A study last year showed that HALF of California’s working teachers do not know what the offsets will mean to them. Our own survey showed the devastation that the lack of knowledge beforehand has caused retirees. This is cruel as well as unfair.
Goals for 2016
This year we will continue to refine and direct our message. No one is expecting any big changes in Social Security in this election year, but we will work to attach our message to the cries for Social Security expansion and to build support for our cause among groups that should be our natural allies: groups that support seniors and women, worker associations and unions.
A critical part of our work will be to involve the unions and associations that represent workers penalized by GPO and WEP. Can you identify right now your own personal target group? Pick a local or state organization that you will “educate” about the offsets and how unfair they are. In addition, each month, we will choose a national organization that we believe needs to hear from ALL of us. We will share ideas and materials for you to do that. Let us know at ssfairness(@)gmail.com which group you have chosen, if you want us to connect you with another person with a similar project.
The conventional wisdom is to simply tell people how the offsets have affected your life. We want to help you back that up with statistics that will show that you are not alone. We need you to speak up wherever you can!
Our voices are strong! Our cause is just! We will persist!
Thank you for being with us!