Friday, July 22, 2011

Kokua Council supports group opposing Social Security and Medicare cuts

Kokua Council is the only organization in Hawaii to join the Strengthen Social Security Coalition. The Coalition, with  over 300 national and state organizations representing over 50 million Americans, opposes the cuts that President Obama and Congress are discussion to both Social Security and Medicare.

Below is new release issued by SSSC on Friday, July 22, 2011.

35 National Disabilities Groups Representing Millions of Americans Urge President Obama & Congress Not to Cut Social Security Benefits
Groups Send Letters Opposing Changes to COLA Formula that Would Result in Significant Benefit Cuts
Washington, DC — Two leading disability group coalitions – the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities and the National Disability Leadership Alliance– sent letters to President Obama and to members of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate recently, urging them to oppose any effort to reduce the Social Security and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Cost of Living Adjustments (COLAs) by adopting the chained consumer price index (CPI) formula during debt-ceiling negotiations.
The letters, which were signed by a total of 35 organizations, identified specific and significant cuts to benefits that would occur in programs that people with disabilities greatly depend on – Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income – should the chained CPI be used to calculate the annual COLA. Those cuts are detailed in this fact sheet.
The Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities letter said: “Although some might describe use of the “chained” CPI as a mere technical change, it will likely have dramatic impacts on current and future Social Security beneficiaries. For a beneficiary receiving the average Disability Insurance benefit, benefits would be cut by $333 per year (2.6%) after 10 years, $692 (5.4%) after 20 years, and $1,710 per year (13.34%) after 50 years. These cuts could be devastating and force people to make terrible life and death choices between paying for a prescription or buying food.”
The National Disability Leadership Alliance letter said: “For many of these citizens, changing the COLA formula this way will mean taking them one step closer to a life below the poverty level. Rather than finding ways to decrease the COLA, our country should increase it to better reflect such realities as the higher out-of-pocket health care costs experienced by people with disabilities and seniors.”

Monday, July 18, 2011

July 25 Program: Affordable Housing

Monday, July 25, 2011

11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Miyama Main Hall, Harris United Methodist Church

Nuuanu Ave. and South Vineyard Blvd.

Ample parking - driveway off Nuuanu Ave.


11:30           Luncheon: Various Sub Sandwiches, Salad, and Dessert by Marilyn—$5.00 Donation

11:45           Welcome, Introductions and Remarks, Larry Geller, President

12:00   Program:Affordable Housing,” Sam Moku, New Director, City and County of Honolulu Department of Community Services and Elizabeth Bethea, Elderly Affairs Division.

12:20           Questions and Answers

1:00             Adjourn

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Obama states: No Guarantee of Social Security Checks if Talks Fail

by Larry Geller

For Hawaii seniors, the debt ceiling squabble over in Washington, DC may seem far away and unrelated.

It’s possible it will come home to us, and hard. This is from today’s Democracy Now headlines:

Obama: No Guarantee of Social Security Checks if Talks Fail

Speaking to CBS News, President Obama said he cannot guarantee Social Security checks will be mailed out if an agreement fails.

Scott Pelley: Can you tell the folks at home that no matter what happens, the Social Security checks are gonna go out on August the third? There are about $20 billion worth of Social Security checks that have to go out the day after the government is supposedly gonna go into default?

President Obama: "Well, this is not just a matter of Social Security checks. These are veterans’ checks, these are folks on disability, and their checks. There are about 70 million checks that go out each month."

Pelley: "Can you guarantee, as president, those checks will go out on August the third?"

Obama: "I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on August third if we haven’t resolved this issue. Because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it."

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