Apr 12, 2013

NOSSCR Issues Press Release To Combat Attacks On Social Security Disability Programs

     The National Organization of Social Security Claimants Representatives has put out a press release on the "dramatic, sensationalized media reports about the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs, based on anecdotes, half-truths and misrepresentation of facts."


Anonymous said...

oh, well, that should clear up all the confusion and end the debate once and for all. lol

Anonymous said...

It's about time someone said something to cut through the hateful propaganda that's aimed against those who are disabled and their income.

It's like to some if one can't work anymore, one should be a beggar and get crumbs(if that), instead of treating people decently with a decent income. Some decry tax money going to the disabled when they know full well there would be no reduction in what they pay in taxes, though others would hope for a reduction in their taxes that would never come, the money would just be used elsewhere in the Federal Budget.

Just sayin.

Anonymous said...

AEI has posted the presentations from today's program in DC. Mark Duggan upped the ante in his attack on the program by essentially saying that SSA actuaries don't know what they are doing. http://www.aei.org/events/2013/04/12/disability-insurance-inherent-problems-practical-solutions-and-action-for-reform-part-1/

Anonymous said...

Again, this stark differences between SSI and T2 are not highlighted. SSI is a complete train wreck, and embodies in reality all of the stereotypes about disability and welfare benefits. In other words, it is as bad, and even worse, as people think it is. But, nothing will be done about it, even as tens of billions of dollars are wasted every year in an unstoppable juggernaut of profligacy.

Anonymous said...

It is difficult for me to sympathize with somebody who is in their 40s applying for SSI, aside from the extremely rare case where the disabling condition(s) were there all along and it just took forever for somebody to see them/appreciate them/document them/pay the case.

Why do you have minimal earnings in your 20+ adult years? During that span, the economy had plenty of good and extremely good periods, where even folks with marginal education and skills could get and perform some type of gainful employment for a lengthy period.

I'm sure people will crow about the disabling conditions being there all along, but I don't see that. So many of the 40-year-old+ SSI apps I see do not allege or document some mental impairment or chronic physical impairment that has actually been preventing work all along--it is almost invariably the alleged impairments are recent spinal issues or similar musculoskeletal conditions that are the "privilege of aging," and the mental symptoms that come as a result.

The vast majority of these folks did not start believing they were disabled or begin filing for benefits until a year or so before I am looking at their files. For those with prior apps, add another year or two to that timeframe. So where are the earnings from the previous two decades of their adult lives? It does not take that much work activity to earn sufficient quarters of coverage to get yourself Title II insurability for a few years. It really doesn't.

So then, why do I look at barren earnings records day in an day out for people in their 40s and older who have not alleged disabiliy before recently and have no medical evidence in their files even hinting at the long-term presence of some significantly limiting impairment(s)? I am forced to conclude that this group of people never bothered to work or they were tax cheats who didn't report earnings. In either case, my sympathy well runs dry.

Anonymous said...

8:58 AM makes some excellent points. There are too many who believe they are not responsible for their own future. What is worse are many of them also engage in behaviors that are unhealthy or foolish that inevitably lead to bad outcomes. The overweight teenagers and those in their 20's and 30's who cannot get away from fast food and sodas. How about those ignoring the risks of drug and alcohol use. These are the disability claims to come. Healthful living and accepting personal responsibility are concepts that go far beyond race, liberal vs. conservative, and economics. The fact that government policies enable and reward bad behavior is not in doubt, be it for tolerating unethical corporate actions, providing home loans to those unable to pay, or for building a financial safety net for those who refuse to provide for themselves. Fortunately, the corporate group is small in number and solutions can be easily found and actions taken to modify their behavior. Unfortunately, the last group is a much larger population that continues to grow because you do not need money to take advantage of that system. Actions taken to modify their behavior and reduce their numbers will have to overcome emotional claims concerning compassion, imagined rights, etc. At what point do we draw that line to save the disability program? Are we rational enough to make the hard decisions, or so weak that we ignore the future? Have we already past that point of no return?

Anonymous said...

8:58 a.m.: Nobody is "forced to conclude" that SSI claimants with low earnings are all lazy and/ or tax cheats. If you make that assumption, then it is because you are rushing to judgment.

How about women who have a weak earnings record because they spent many years raising children? Most of us would agree that child-rearing is real work even if it is uncompensated.

Also, you are exaggerating when you say that these claimants are "almost invariably" only alleging recent spinal impairments and resultant mental symptoms. I see many different impairments alleged in the SSI cases I review.

One common pattern I see is a long history of mental impairments (e.g., schizophrenia, borderline intellectual functioning, etc.). The claimant can't keep a job, so she doesn't have health insurance; and she doesn't have regular access to health care, so it takes many years for her to document her impairments.

Also, at what stage of the application process are you making up your mind that these claimants are just lazy? The record is probably not fully developed until the claimant has a hearing at the earliest. If you don't review the complete record, then you are just speculating about the claimant's medical history and reasons for not working.

Anonymous said...

I usually make up my mind at the initial application phase. Mostly is right after Iva's them why they don't have an earnings record and their response is something along the lines of: "I don't know, i just never had a job ya know". That usually does it for me.

Anonymous said...

NOSSCR cannot be taken seriously as long as it has major ties to the largest company in the country doing Disability Representation. It just makes it look lile B and B wants to keep making all that money.