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Aug. 14 marked the 79th anniversary of Social Security. When it was first signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1935, nearly half of all older Americans were living in poverty. Today, the program keeps 109,000 Mainers from falling into poverty, and more than one-third of those that receive Social Security benefits rely on it for their sole source of income.
AARP recently released a survey in which registered voters in Maine age 50 and older identified the issues most important to them. Over half said that they worry about not having Social Security available to them in the future. Many of these people have paid into Social Security for years now and deserve the security of knowing they will receive their benefits.
Hopefully, elected officials already in office and those running for office this November will honor Social Security’s anniversary by ensuring the program will continue to be around for all Mainers as we age. What better way to celebrate the creation of a program that has helped millions throughout the past 79 years than to make sure it continues to help people for many more years to come?
Jackie Katz, AARP Maine