Social Security disability benefits need to be verified
According to Newsmax (3), there has been a tremendous surge in the number of Americans receiving Social Security disability benefits, something that was intended to help workers over age 50 that became physically unable to perform their job.
The disability benefits are now being used for workers under age 50, disabled spouses of deceased workers, and disabled adult children who were never able to work in the first place.
It also includes Americans diagnosed with mental impairments, and more than 30 percent of disability cases involve mental disorders, half involving mood problems.
Another factor is that less than one-half of one percent of these “disabled” individuals ever returns to work because the program lacks a simple verification of the disabled person’s current status.
Like most government programs it lacks accountability. It has also become a substitute for people who can’t find work in Obama’s recovering economy.
In 2012, 8.8 million disabled workers and 2.1 million of their dependents received disability insurance payments totaling $137 billion — an increase of 1 million new beneficiaries over three years.
In 1960, just 0.65 percent of workforce participants between the ages of 18 and 64 were receiving Social Security disability insurance payments, but now 5.6 percent get benefits, Jonah Goldberg discloses in an op-ed piece for the Los Angeles Times.
In 1960, there were 134 working Americans for every officially recognized disabled worker. Five decades later, the ratio is about 16 to 1.
By 2016, disability expenditures are expected to rise to $170 billion a year. And by 2018, it is projected that nearly 1 in 14 working-age Americans will be receiving disability payments, according to Pamela Villarreal, a senior fellow with the National Center for Policy Analysis.
To limit these benefits to the truly needy, so the benefits do not become another source of funding for a second federal unemployment program, the United States should periodically verify that the disability for which the benefit was given to the individual is still viable. The results have been astounding in Britain.
Goldberg describes how Britain asked everyone receiving an “incapacity benefit” — similar to a disability benefit in the United States — to submit to a medical test to confirm they were in fact disabled and couldn’t work.
One-third of recipients dropped out of the program rather than be tested — nearly 900,000 people. Of those tested, 55 percent were found fit for work and one-quarter were found fit for some work.
It’s simple logic from where I sit … working.