Tell Congress: No One should be forced to live below poverty

Members of Congress

My name is Amanda. I have a permanent visual impairment and Congress's inaction has forced me to live SUB-POVERTY and to not MARRY the person I love, and I cannot SAVE for emergencies or for my family's needs, get a JOB, or have the FREEDOM to live on my own. Congress, will you not see me?

Many people like Amanda are not seen by members of our society because they are dependent on SSI. Also known as Supplemental Security Income, the program provides vital assistance to nearly 8 million elderly and disabled folks (which includes 1 million disabled children).

However, SSI benefits are so menial that recipients are well below the federal poverty line. How can we be a wealthy nation, when so many are poor and mistreated? It is morally reprehensible that two people hold as much wealth in the US as the bottom 40 percent. Congress must stand to protect the vulnerable and unseen members of our society, not continue to neglect them like has been done for decades. Action MUST be taken to tell Congress and the government at large that the disabled and elderly deserve as much attention as any other citizen of this country. Especially since anyone can become sick and disabled, and everyone will eventually grow old. The Supplemental Security Income Restoration Act is vital for improving the lives of so many who have been crippled by the government's inaction and protecting future generations as well.

Will you take one (1) minute to send a message to Congress to support and co-sponsor the SSI Restoration Act?

The SSI Restoration Act would:

  • Raise SSI's sub-poverty-level monthly benefits, currently $794 per month, to 100% of the federal poverty level – a 31% increase – and index them to inflation.

  • Update and index the assets individuals or couples may have up to $10,000 and $20,000, respectively. The current limit of $2,000 for an individual and $3,000 for a couple has not been updated since 1989.

  • Update and index SSI's income rules – which have never been updated since the program was signed into law in 1972.

  • Eliminate the marriage penalty and increase the benefit for married couples to double the individual rate, to put marriage equality within reach for SSI beneficiaries.

  • Eliminate benefit reductions that penalize beneficiaries who receive in-kind help from friends or family, such as groceries or a place to stay.

Works cited:

Sponsored by

To: Members of Congress
From: [Your Name]

Dear Member of Congress,

I am writing to urge you to support and co-sponsor H.R.3824 - Supplemental Security Income Restoration Act of 2021.

It's shameful that our most treasured community members (the elderly and disabled) are treated so poorly. Your inaction is forcing those who rely on SSI to continue live sub-poverty, not marry who they love, save for emergencies, get a job, or have the freedom to live on their own.

I am asking you to support this bill as a co-sponsor on H.R.3824 - Supplemental Security Income Restoration Act of 2021. It is vital in the effort to bring SSI into the twenty-first century. Enabling the most vulnerable (and often neglected) members of our country to live the lives they deserve to live should be top priority. Or will you not see those who need it most, especially in this time of crisis and the ongoing pandemic?

I appreciate your prompt attention in this matter.