The Seniors Center creates constructive solutions
to the issues that are most critical to our senior citizens. We are a non-partisan nonprofit organization
based in Washington, DC, representing more than 450,000 voters in 48 states
covering 412 congressional districts.
Our most impactful work is in securing the
retirement of America’s seniors by mobilizing
the grassroots community to interact directly with our lawmakers.. Every year
we help citizens draft thousands of documents that convey our concerns directly
In 2017, we facilitated over 1.9 million direct
contacts between policymakers and the citizens they represent – our grassroots
campaigns include petition drives, letter-writing campaigns, advertisements,
emails, social media programs, and surveys.
At the core of The Seniors Center’s campaigns to
increase public awareness and influence lawmakers is our belief a secure
retirement for America’s seniors begins with protecting the Social Security
The Social Security Act was formally passed as a law in 1935. It was a
comprehensive piece of legislation seeking to ensure old age benefits,
unemployment insurance, help for dependent mothers and children, support for
persons with disabilities, and benefits to victims of industrial accidents.
As the American activist, Noam
Chomsky said, “Social Security is based on a
principle. It's based on the principle that you care about other people. You
care whether the widow across town, a disabled widow, is going to be able to
have food to eat.”
It was an All-American solution to an epidemic
problem: fighting retirement insecurity with earned benefits--not government
funds--and creating a self-funded Trust that truly belongs to retirees. Today, more than 15 million Americans over
the age of 65 depend on Social Security during retirement.
Yet despite the resounding success of what is now
one of our most beloved federal programs, many of us fear for Social Security’s
present--and near future.
The problems began in the 1980s when the Government saw in Social Security an easy source of
money to overcome its deficits. Funds began to be diverted from the Old-Age and
Survivors Insurance Trust Fund (OASI) and used for different general spending
What started as occasional borrowing from the Social
Security Trust Funds has snowballed into standard procedure for successive
governments--and Congress has shown no willingness to stop this practice.
In three decades almost $3 trillion in surplus
reserves has been spent from the Social Security Trust Fund. Annual benefits are
set to exceed the annual income collected in payroll taxes from 2019 onwards.
Our government would need to fall back on surplus
reserves to continue to pay full scheduled benefits after this point. These
reserves are only estimated to last another 15 years before they run out
But thanks to Congress spending the surplus -- intentionally
collected over time with this nearing shortfall in mind -- there isn’t actually
a single dime of money left over after benefits are paid. There is no “account” where our payroll taxes
are kept. All that exists of the Trust
Fund is a file cabinet housing the government’s IOUs to Social Security.
The government issues a special obligation Treasury
bond for each chunk of money it borrows from Social Security. Unlike other Treasury bonds, these special
obligation bonds are not marketable: they can’t be sold, they can’t be traded
or invested, and they can’t be immediately flipped into money. They strictly represent the federal
government’s debt to Social Security.
In other words, these bonds have no cash
value. They are federal IOUs.
A lot of this irresponsible spending is because of
the influence specific lobbying groups have in the corridors of power. Our goal
is to provide a counterpoint to such lobbies and motivate the citizens most
affected by this spending to directly influence their lawmakers.
The Seniors Center was among the first to blow the
lid off this massive misuse of Social Security funds and we continue to educate
our citizens so they can effectively demand the repayment of these huge loans.
We want to ensure the insolvency of the Social Security Trust Funds remains never
transitions from a nightmare into a harsh reality.
So if someone is set to retire in another ten to 15
years, would a retirement without full Social Security be a real possibility?
Is it true without intervention that Social Security payments will be reduced by nearly a quarter?
That is the scenario we can foresee clearly. And given the unchanging estimates and
reports from the Social Security Trustees and other financial experts, there’s
no question Congress needs to act NOW to preserve full scheduled benefits for
We believe that our citizens spend their lifetimes
earning an honest living while putting away part of their paychecks for their retirement--those funds should
never be hijacked by myopic Congressmen only interested in using these funds
for their short-term problems, refusing
to look at the long-term financial
security of the very people whose wages have contributed to those funds.
Not all Congressmen are like that, though. We do
receive solid support from several elected representatives who are as concerned
about the rights and privileges of senior citizens as we are.
We are so grateful that we have some voices of
support in Washington, but our real strength comes from our thousands of
dedicated members who share our view about what the challenge is and what
should be done to fix it. This massive movement to secure a critical right of
senior citizens has been gathering steam and we now have the critical mass
necessary for Washington to sit up and take notice.
Every battle needs an army of dedicated soldiers, but
victory rarely comes without an astute general who can lead the troops with
vision and courage, and also rally them around when things look difficult.
We are very lucky to have the leadership of our
President, Dan Perrin, as we navigate these troubled waters towards a world
where our senior citizens do not need to worry about their old age funds.
Dan studied at Carleton University, and then went
on to study political science at the University of Massachusetts. He has been a
staff member in the U.S. Senate, from where he moved on to become a registered lobbyist.
Now a resident of Washington, DC, Dan has six
beautiful children, and he is a keen enthusiast of children’s sports,
particularly soccer and lacrosse. He is the author of a seminal work on our
health care crisis. He answers questions directly from the public through
Quora, where in January 2018, he was ranked the most-read expert on both Social
Security and Government. He has been tirelessly
leading our movement since 2012, and he describes himself as President of a
group dedicated to representing the interests of both Baby Boomers as well as
The Greatest Generation.
Although the Social Security funds are what keep us
most occupied, we also try and lend a hand in other issues concerning our
retired elders, through our website, articles, and
blogs. We believe that people who have given their lives working for a better future
for the next generation deserve support when they need help.
If you are retired or are soon to retire, we urge
you to join The Seniors Center in our mission to finally protect Social
Security for seniors. Even if you are
too young for that now but just interested in helping, we invite you to join
our movement to help secure the future of our seniors.
The Seniors Center regularly publishes news and
commentary about the Social Security Trust Fund and other issues of interest to
senior citizens at our website www.TheSeniors.Center
We also maintain a blog to help alert and educate
senior citizens about scams and frauds against seniors at www.TheSeniorsCenter.blog
Finally, we maintain a portal at www.TheSeniorsCenter.info
to help our friends and members navigate The Seniors Center community.