The Retiree Advocate: August 2015
Welcome to the August 2015 issue of The Retiree Advocate, the monthly newsletter of the Puget Sound Advocates for Retirement Action (PSARA).
In This Issue:
- March, 2016 ADVOCATE
- Climate Change Is Violence…NOW
- Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis: The Cost of Being a US Colony
- What’s Next in the Fight for Fair Trade?
- What’s Wrong with Europe?
- "Secret Memo": Primary Election Bad News for Developers and Landlords
- Initiative 735 Urges Congress to Amend the US Constitution
- Frank Irigon Receives National Award
- In Memory of Edie Koch
- Celebrate and Organize
Some residents of Willis House, a Seattle Senior Housing Program building, have formed a “rent committee” to look into SSHP’s current policy of calculating rents.
The first 30-day special session of Washington’s State Legislature hasn’t brought Senate Republicans and House Democrats any closer to agreement on the state budget. It’s looking like the gloomy predictions many made last January will come true – that the legislature won’t finish up until the end of June, when the threat of a government shutdown come July 1 might force action.
From Trayvon Martin in Florida, Michael Brown in Ferguson, Eric Garner in Staten Island, to the recent killing of Tony Robinson in Madison, Wisconsin: it is clear that the nation remains divided on race and bloodlines.
With the publication by SSA of its Vision 2025, it is quite clear that the agency either has no plans for SSA field offices, or that they do, and do not want to talk about them. In a 10,000 word document describing the future of the agency, there are exactly two mentions of SSA field offices – neither one providing any insight into the agency’s plans for serving the public. This is true despite the fact that almost 50 percent of SSA employees work in field offices.
PSARA members and other supporters of the Health Care Is a Human Right campaign are being invited to be part of a statewide Health Care Action Team.
Just before recessing until April 13, the Senate passed a budget resolution. Prior to final passage, it voted on three separate Social Security amendments. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) offered an amendment protecting all Americans against cuts in their Social Security earned benefits.
Coming up very soon on Tuesday, May 5, is one BIG day when you can do something simple and concrete to help move our work forward. If you believe in the work of Puget Sound Advocates for Retirement Action, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to the PSARA Education Fund, our nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c )(3) organization, through the 24-hour online giving program called “GiveBIG” sponsored by The Seattle Foundation.
April 16 the President signed into law the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (“MACRA”). This legislation breaks a dysfunctional cycle that for too long has threatened the Medicare program with cuts that would jeopardize the health security of American seniors.
One of the most significant Medicare bills in decades just became law. Every Washington Representative voted in favor of H.R. 2, “The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015” with the exception of Rep. Adam Smith who did not vote. Both of our U.S. Senators also voted for the bill and the President has signed it.
Adding a long-term care benefit to Medicare is one of the most important issues PSARA raised in the context of the White House Conference on Aging. There was no commitment from federal officials to do so, but there really is no alternative to the federal government stepping up and covering long-term home health care.