NCPSSM Board Chair, Catherine Dodd, testified before the Senate Finance Committee today on the retirement challenges facing America’s women and the National Committee’s Eleanor’s Hope initiative to improve Social Security benefits:
“22 million older women receive Social Security benefits yet the inequalities they face threaten their retirement security. Persistent gender wage discrimination, work gaps taken to care for loved ones, the lack of pensions and generally longer lives mean women receive a significantly lower Social Security benefit than men. While the Social Security system is gender-neutral, life is not and America’s senior women pay the price for that inequality for as long as they live. We urge Congress to level the playing field for millions of our nation’s older women.” Catherine Dodd, PhD, RN and NCPSSM Board Chair
Members of the Senate Finance Committee heard testimony from witnesses today in a hearing entitled, “Social Security: Is a Key Foundation of Economic Security Working for Women?” National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare Board Chair, Catherine Dodd, urged the Senate to address the inequities that reduce the average monthly Social Security benefit for women. In 2012 the average woman retiree received $1,103 a month while a retired man received a $1,414 monthly benefit. The National Committee believes women deserve an adequate retirement income whether a work life is spent in the home in the paid workforce or a combination of the two. Toward that end, our new initiative, Eleanor’s Hope — named in honor of first lady and activist Eleanor Roosevelt — is mobilizing women of all ages to advocate for income equality, retirement security and health protection for women.
Some of the National Committee’s proposals for improving benefits in Social Security presented to the Senate Finance Committee today include:
· Providing Social Security credits for caregivers
· Improving Social Security survivor benefits
· Equalizing Social Security’s rules for disabled widows
· Strengthening the Social Security Cost of Living Allowance
· Boosting the basic Social Security benefit of all current and future beneficiaries
You can see Catherine Dodd’s full Senate testimony here.