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Social Security: Connecting to older Americans

Kathy Petersen
For the May 14, 2011 edition of Tri-State Livestock News.

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Older Americans Month is an occasion to show appreciation and support for our seniors as they continue to enrich and strengthen our communities. This May, the theme “Older Americans: Connecting the Community” pays homage to the many ways in which older adults bring inspiration and continuity to the fabric of our communities and highlights how technology is helping older Americans live longer, healthier, and more engaged lives.

Social Security uses technology to make dealing with Social Security easier for seniors. We offer a variety of services at http://www.socialsecurity.gov. Just look at the “top services” column to the left of the page to see the wide range of services that technology allows us to offer online.

Social Security has a special relationship with American seniors since we pay benefits, at one time or another, to just about every one of them. Nine out of ten Americans aged 65 or older receive Social Security benefits.

Here are some more statistics to consider. Among older Social Security beneficiaries, 52 percent of married couples and 72 percent of unmarried persons receive half or more of their income from Social Security. Older Americans are a growing group, too. Life expectancy continues to rise, and by 2035, it’s estimated that there will be twice as many older Americans as there are today.

Older Americans, as well as people who don’t expect to retire anytime soon, who use Social Security’s Web site give it consistently high customer satisfaction ratings. Right now you can get an estimate of your future retirement benefits, plan your retirement, even apply for retirement benefits right over our Web site. Visit us online at http://www.socialsecurity.gov.

Learn more about what you can do to celebrate Older Americans Month by visiting the organization’s Web site: http://www.olderamericansmonth.org.

kathy petersen is a public affairs specialist for social security, denver region. you can write her c/o social security administration, 605 main, suite 201, rapid city, sd, 57701 or via e-mail at kathy.petersen@ssa.gov. next week kathy shares the answers to questions she receives from folks in the region in her monthly “q&a” column.


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