The Elderly and Disabled Get Screwed Again



An article published on titled “No Raise for Social Security Recipients” this year. The formula that the Social Security Administration uses to track inflation based increases on CPI-W (explained here).

Basically, the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA ) is tied to economic factors that actually do not apply all that well to people for whom Social Security is a major (or only) source of income (for retired and disabled persons). But for many recipients of Social Security Retirement (SSA) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), the failure to increase benefits results in an actual net loss of income, since the actual cost of living has increased considerably more than what the Social Security Administration accounts for in its COLA formula. For example, rents have been climbing way faster than wage or COLA increases have addressed. One SSDI recipient’s rent (alone) has increased $100 per month, yet his income remains the same as it was last year. Groceries are costing more, and medical costs are already out of control. An actual monthly increase for a disabled SSDI recipient might be over $150.00, so instead of income remaining the same, it’s actually decreasing  by $150 per month.

The government is screwing Social Security recipients. As has been the standard for the government (and the right wing), those who are hurt the worst by changing economic factors (deficit reduction, spending “reform” or, in this case, “no significant change” in the CPI-W) always include the most vulnerable in our society: the elderly and the disabled.  Why must the poorest Americans be expected to pay more with less income than … the rest of Americans?