Retirement Security

All people deserve to retire with dignity, but almost half of all Americans are not covered by a retirement plan at their workplace. Low- and middle-income families face stagnant wages, increasing costs for life’s essentials, and other structural barriers to wealth-building. EOI advocates for the protection and expansion of Social Security at the national level via Social Security Works, and locally via Social Security Works – Washington. We are also engaged with local allies and stakeholders to design and implement a state-based retirement security program that will help ensure a secure retirement for all Washington residents, and provide a replicable policy template in other states.

FEATURED PROFILE

A Forced Early Retirement, and Not Enough to Live On

When changes in her contract work at Microsoft timed with with her partner’s need for full-time care, Aganita Varkentine left the workforce earlier than she had anticipated. In order to care for her partner,  Aganita had little choice but to begin her Social Security benefits at age 62, even though she knew her benefits would be higher if she waited longer to enroll.

Today, Aganita has lived almost entirely on her Social Security checks for 15 years. Without this income, “I’d be on the street,” she says.

After her medical and dental premiums, Aganita receives a monthly net income of $1,118. This is $64 less than the average benefit of $1,182.24, and only 110.5% of the Federal Poverty Level. This income allows Aganita to pay for her essential needs but it does not provide a comfortable living. After her day-to-day expenses, medical care, and helping to support her son as he enrolls in SSI Disability Insurance, this small budget is stretched thin.

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Research Feed

Retirement Security
Social Security Works for Washington State

Five facts and six fixes for "America's pension" in 2020

Retirement Security
The Case for State Supplemental Social Security

After a lifetime of hard work, aging shouldn’t beget economic hardship

Retirement Security
Delivering on the Promise of Social Security: America’s Pension Plan

Social Security dramatically reduces poverty

Blog Feed

Retirement Security

July 20, 2020

GOP Payroll Tax Cut: Little to Nothing for Most Americans, a Windfall for the Top 20%

Undercutting Social Security's finances is a first step toward dismantling the program

Retirement Security

June 9, 2020

Social Security’s long-term outlook is strong, but Americans’ retirement prospects are declining

Federal policymakers should act now to expand benefits as impact of COVID-19 pandemic widens

A Fair Deal at Work

March 31, 2020

Social Security Recipients May Be Denied Stimulus

Seniors, disabled individuals, and veterans less likely to receive a stimulus rebate