President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act into law 83 years ago today, August 14, 1935. Here are some key facts about the program, courtesy of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:
- About 62 million people received Social Security checks in June of this year.
- The average monthly check was $1,343.
- Benefits for the average worker are only about half those in other developed countries.
- Social Security lifts about 15 million elderly Americans out of poverty.
- About 1 in 5 seniors rely on Social Security for virtually all of their income (more than 90 percent).
- Administrative costs for the program are just 0.7 percent of annual benefits.
- Social Security’s trust funds will be exhausted by 2034. If policymakers do not act by then, payments will be reduced by about 25 percent.