CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – Social Security benefits more than 65 million Americans, mainly retirees, but also disabled people and survivors of deceased workers. New projections show the trust fund will run out by 2034.
Social Security and Medicare remain under intense financial pressure with the retirement of millions of baby boomers, living longer than previous generations.
“Here in West Virginia, we have about 300,000 citizens who rely on social security. And for many of them it makes up 90% or more of their retirement income and so that’s vital,” said Jane Marks, West Virginia AARP President.
Marsha Albert is one of those West Virginians relying on Social Security. She says, recent reports won’t affect her, but her family.
“I have adult children, and adult grandchildren even and it will affect them. And also I think it will take the incentive away of just good hard work,” said Albert.
Marks says the government needs to come up with a better plan.
“That’s our money. West Virginians have worked for years and paid into these programs therefore we believe we should have a say in anything that happens to these programs there should be open dialogue. Every member of Congress should be held responsible for what happens to Social Security,” she said.
Recipients argue that people who worked and paid into these programs can still benefit from them.
“Knowing that you’re going to get that check every month from the government, it’s not free we paid into it, lets us have a certain lifestyle,” said Albert.
Both Social Security and Medicare account for more than 40% of the federal budget.