Skip to main content
Resolutions & Amendments

38th International Convention - San Francisco, CA (2008)

Defending and Strengthening Social Security

Resolution No. 44
38th International Convention
Moscone West
July 28 - August 1, 2008
San Francisco, CA

The Republican administration and conservatives have targeted Social Security for massive overhaul and privatization. By using scare tactics they attempted to rally support in their privatization campaign. President Bush cut taxes in 2001 and 2003, which left federal revenues at levels that will not support benefits promised to future retirees.  In 2005, President Bush tried to overhaul Social Security and create private investment accounts, which would have drained money from the Social Security trust fund and worsened its solvency; and

According to current projections, Social Security spending will exceed projected tax collections beginning in 2017. However, the system will be able to pay full benefits until the exhaustion of the Social Security Trust Fund in 2041. After 2041, Social Security will depend exclusively on payroll taxes and will be able to cover approximately 78 percent of the benefits. By 2082, Social Security payroll taxes are expected to cover only 75 of the law benefits; and

Over 49 million people receive benefits from Social Security including retired workers, disabled, survivors, and children; and

Social Security benefits represent at least 90 percent of the income for a large proportion of the elderly, African Americans, Hispanics, and unmarried women who receive such benefits. Overall, Social Security benefits represent 41 percent of the income of beneficiaries age 65 and over. The poverty rate for beneficiaries would rise from 10 percent to 46 percent without Social Security benefits.

That AFSCME will lobby for and support legislative proposals designed to strengthen the Social Security system including, but not limited to, increasing the taxable maximum, increasing payroll tax, and the progressive indexation of benefits; and

That AFSCME will lobby the Democratic presidential candidate to incorporate the protection and defense of Social Security as part of his legislative agenda.
SUBMITTED BY: Juan Fernandez, President and Delegate
Sheera Glass, Delegate
Mark Heron, Delegate
Thomas Orawiec, Delegate
AFSCME Local 154, Council 37
New York