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Social Insurance & Social Security Chronology: Part V — 1960s

The following pages present a detailed historical chronology of the development of social insurance, with particular emphasis on Social Security. Items are included in this compilation on the basis of their significance for Social Security generally, their importance as precedents, their value in reflecting trends or issues, or their significance in Social Security Administration’s administrative history. The information includes legislative events in Social Security and related programs. Our expectation is that this Chronology can be used as a reference tool and finding aid for important dates and events in Social Security’s long history.Continue Reading »

Social Insurance & Social Security Chronology: Part IV — 1940s

The following pages present a detailed historical chronology of the development of social insurance, with particular emphasis on Social Security. Items are included in this compilation on the basis of their significance for Social Security generally, their importance as precedents, their value in reflecting trends or issues, or their significance in SSA’s administrative history. The information includes legislative events in Social Security and related programs. Our expectation is that this Chronology can be used as a reference tool and finding aid for important dates and events in Social Security’s long history.Continue Reading »

Social Insurance & Social Security Chronology: Part III – 1930s

The following pages present a detailed historical chronology of the development of social insurance, with particular emphasis on Social Security. Items are included in this compilation on the basis of their significance for Social Security generally, their importance as precedents, their value in reflecting trends or issues, or their significance in SSA’s administrative history. The information includes legislative events in Social Security and related programs. Our expectation is that this Chronology can be used as a reference tool and finding aid for important dates and events in Social Security’s long history.Continue Reading »

Social Insurance & Social Security Chronology: Part II – 1900s – 1920s

The following pages present a detailed historical chronology of the development of social insurance, with particular emphasis on Social Security. Items are included in this compilation on the basis of their significance for Social Security generally, their importance as precedents, their value in reflecting trends or issues, or their significance in SSA’s administrative history. The information includes legislative events in Social Security and related programs. Our expectation is that this Chronology can be used as a reference tool and finding aid for important dates and events in Social Security’s long history.Continue Reading »

Social Insurance & Social Security Chronology: Part I — 1600s — 1800s

The following pages present a detailed historical chronology of the development of social insurance, with particular emphasis on Social Security. Items are included in this compilation on the basis of their significance for Social Security generally, their importance as precedents, their value in reflecting trends or issues, or their significance in Social Security Administration’s administrative history. The information includes legislative events in Social Security and related programs. Our expectation is that this Chronology can be used as a reference tool and finding aid for important dates and events in Social Security’s long history.Continue Reading »

Social Responsibility for Individual Welfare

We have to recognize that our type of capitalism in this country is different from what the same word connotes in some other countries. From the time of the last depression we have taken great strides in the recognition of the responsibility of government and industry to cooperate to prevent any disasters to the normal economy of the country. We have to be prepared to meet disasters caused by nature. These we expect the government to cooperate in meeting, but we recognize the responsibility of industry today as well as of the individual. We believe that together we should strive to give every individual a chance for a decent and secure existence and in evolving our social patterns we are trying to give both hope for better things in the future and security from want in the present.Continue Reading »

Are We Overlooking the Pursuit of Happiness?

“…For the old people who have lived so long a life of independence, how bitter it must be to come for everything they need to the youngsters who once turned to them!

From every point of view, it seems to me that the old age pension for people who so obviously could not lay aside enough during their working years to live on adequately through their old age, is a national responsibility and one that must be faced when we are planning for a better future.

Unemployment insurance in many homes is all that stands between many a family and starvation. Given a breathing spell, a man or woman may be able to get another job or to re-educate himself in some new line of work, but few people live with such a wide margin that they have enough laid aside to face several months of idleness….”Continue Reading »

Old Age Pensions – Eleanor Roosevelt (1934)

“…We can hardly be happy knowing that throughout this country so many fine citizens who have done all that they could for their young people must end their days divided–for they usually are divided in the poorhouse. Old people love their own things even more than young people do. It means so much to sit in the same old chair you sat in for a great many years, to see the same picture that you always looked at!

And that is what an old age security law will do. It will allow the old people to end their days in happiness, and it will take the burden from the younger people who often have all the struggle that they can stand. It will end a bitter situation–bitter for the old people because they hate to be a burden on the young, and bitter for the young because they would like to give gladly but find themselves giving grudgingly and bitterly because it is taking away from what they need for the youth that is coming and is looking to them for support. For that reason I believe that this bill will be a model bill and pass without any opposition this year.”Continue Reading »

Committee on Economic Security – 1934

The President’s Committee on Economic Security (CES) was formed in June 1934 and was given the task of devising “recommendations concerning proposals which in its judgment will promote greater economic security.” In a message to Congress two weeks earlier President Roosevelt spelled-out what he expected the CES to achieve. “. . . I am looking for a sound means which I can recommend to provide at once security against several of the great disturbing factors in life–especially those which relate to unemployment and old age.”Continue Reading »

Legal Background of the Social Security Act (1961)

Beginning in the early 1900’s, a number of States had started to pass State statutes designed to substitute for the old-fashioned poorhouse some kind of aid to poor people who were aged so that they could maintain their own homes. This was partly humanitarian; it was partly because soft-hearted social workers, a profession that was only just beginning, understood that many aged people couldn’t bear to be called paupers and be treated accordingly; and it was partly because when they were moved out of their homes and were put into poorhouses, It was a heart-breaking experience frequently followed by unhappy conditions. There was, however, another interest here–an influence that caused State action. It was purely economic. It was very expensive to run poorhouses. Continue Reading »

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