I am the proud wife of a railroad worker. My husband is up early each day, sometimes working long into the night - often more than 70 hours a week - to ensure that the nation’s rail system runs smoothly and our family has a secure financial future.
All the railroad employees I know, both in the office and on the tracks, work hard to pay into the Railroad Retirement Fund, which has historically been one of the best in the country and has always operated independently from social security. Now, the Social Security Administration (SSA) is about to take control of it, and the fund that we’ve come to count on suddenly faces a very uncertain future.
The railroad retirement system was established a full 61 years before the social security program. And in 1937, President Franklin Roosevelt made railroad employees the only private-sector workers outside the social security system to have a separate, federally administered pension plan.
“Railroad families” are proud of this history, and we want to protect the financial security it affords us. Please raise your voice in support -- do not let the SSA take over control of the Railroad Retirement Fund.
As we all know, social security is facing tough times. SSA trustees recently said the disability trust fund will run out of money in 2016. America’s railroads are a top employer for veterans. This would mean a nearly 20% cut in benefits for those collecting disability. Railroad veterans have not had time to plan for this, and they will face unthinkable hardship if it happens next year.
The 32nd President of the US created a law that made our retirement separate from social security, and we have paid into our secure fund with our sweat and tears ever since. Those who have been in the railroad industry for years, like my husband and many other fathers, sons, mothers, and daughters have planned their futures according to what they figured they would get back from the Railroad Retirement Fund. Changing it now would be devastating to so many families.
Please sign my petition calling on Congress and President Obama to protect the independence of the Railroad Retirement Fund.
Leave our Railroad retirement alone.
Kirsten Fertig started this petition with a single signature, and now has 17,041 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.