Social Security programs are as diverse as those we serve

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SSA: providing services that meet changing needs.

SSA: providing services that meet changing needs.

By Everett M. Lo
Social Security Administration’s Regional Public Affairs Office in the New York Region

From women and children, to the elderly and disabled, Social Security has you covered. Because we value and appreciate the differences that make up our nation, our programs are as diverse as those we serve. We’re with you throughout every stage of your life, and we’re always working to provide services that meet your changing needs.

Our programs serve as vital financial protection for millions of people. When you work and pay Social Security taxes, you earn credits. These credits count toward retirement, disability, and survivors benefits.

A program everyone should be familiar with is Social Security’s retirement program. Whether you’re a young adult paying Social Security taxes for the first time or a retiree receiving benefits, this is a program that will affect you during and after your working years. You can learn more about your earnings and potential benefits by visiting

Social Security administers the largest disability program in the nation. A severe illness or injury robs a person of the ability to work and earn a living. Thankfully, Social Security disability benefits can provide a critical source of financial support during a time of need. For more on disability benefits, visit

When a family loses a wage earner, it can be both emotionally and financially devastating. However, Social Security can help secure a family’s financial future if a loved one dies with survivor benefits. The best thing you can do for your family is prepare as much as possible: get started at

Social Security is important to Asian Americans
Social Security is neutral with respect to race or ethnicity – individuals with identical earnings histories are treated the same in terms of benefits. The information below highlights how Asian Americans benefit from the Social Security program and how certain demographic characteristics of Asian Americans compare with the entire population.

• Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders benefit from the guaranteed benefit that is annually adjusted for inflation. With longer life expectancies, elderly Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders will live more years in retirement and benefit from Social Security’s cost-of-living protections.

• Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders tend to have higher life expectancies at age 65 than the majority of the population.

• In 2013, the average annual Social Security income received by Asian American and Pacific Islander men 65 years and older was $15,499 and for women it was $11,748.

• In 2013, among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders receiving Social Security, 31 percent of elderly married couples and 53 percent of elderly unmarried persons relied on Social Security for 90 percent or more of their income.

• The Asian American and Pacific Islander population in the U.S. is expected to grow. Today, about 5.3 percent of the population is Asian American and Pacific Islander. This proportion is expected to grow to about 9 percent by 2050.

The website at contains more information of interest to Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

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