AARP New Mexico plans to conduct a statewide initiative beginning in March of 2012 to listen to people’s concerns and questions about Social Security as well as share information on how the program works.
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“Social Security is a vital part of most people’s retirement plan,” said Michael Donnelly, AARP New Mexico Associate State Director for Advocacy. “For some people, it’s the only income they have. So when they hear that Congress may cut the program, increase the retirement age, or other such changes, it can cause people a lot of distress and concern, especially in today’s economic climate.”
Currently Social Security can pay full benefits through 2037 and up to 75 percent of beneficiaries after that. Despite this projection, AARP believes that Congress should act sooner rather than later to address the program’s long-term solvency. Still a lot of disinformation on the program’s future is being bantered about.
“We want to share with people the most up to date information AARP has on Social Security’s status as well as gather information on what people are concerned about and what they see or would accept as possible solutions to strengthening the program,” Donnelly said.
To that end, AARP New Mexico plans to conduct community town halls in each quadrant of the state including: Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Taos, Silver City, Las Cruces, Gallup, Carlsbad, Clovis, Belen and Grants.
In addition to the live town halls, AARP will also be conducting teletown halls that people can participate in over the telephone in their own homes.
“We are going to provide a variety of ways that people can share their opinions with us. We’ll be distributing a questionnaire at all our events, which will also be included in some of our national publications, as well as using new tools like Facebook and Twitter to begin conversations with people,” Donnelly said.
To be part of the discussion, opportunities to share your opinions and events will be posted on the AARP New Mexico state webpage as well as on Facebook and Twitter.
Also keep an eye out for member mailings. You can also e-mail the New Mexico state office at NMAARP@aarp.org.
For more information on the initiative call 1-866-389-5636 and ask for Mike Donnelly or Beth Velasquez, AARP New Mexico Associate State Director for Communications.
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