Young Americans should join the debate over Social Security reform, and make themselves heard by legislators on the various reform proposals on the table. There is more at stake for the young than the creation - or non-creation - of private investment accounts funded by Social Security taxes.
Public debate has not yet focused on potential adverse effects to the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program of some reform proposals. The adverse effects include shrinking SSDI benefits and unmanageable increases in the number of people applying for SSDI benefits. These risks are discussed in the U.S. General Accountability Office (GAO) report described below.
Young workers have a stake in the health of the SSDI program. A twenty year old worker has a 3 in 10 (30%) chance of becoming disabled before reaching retirement age. Disability Benefits SSA Publication No. 05-10029, January 2005, www.ssa.gov/pubs/10029.html.
Young workers desiring to acquaint themselves quickly with the major Social Security reform proposals can benefit from reading the brief new GAO report, Options for Social Security Reform, May 6, 2005, GAO-05-649R. Text:www.gao.gov/htext/d05649r.html or
Adobe Acrobat®: www.gao.gov/new.items/d05649r.pdf
Young workers should join in the debate now, and ignore any temptation to stand aside and let others settle the questions about Social Security. The now-young workers who become disabled before reaching retirement age may have to live a long time with any mistakes that today’s reformers make.
To follow developments in Social Security disability, visit: www.disabilityfacts.com
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