Districts are supposed to tell new hires about the impact “WEP and GPO” will have on their Social Security—but often they don’t, says Dennis Cox, president of the CFT Council of Retired Members. That means teachers who are counting on a certain amount of income for their retirement get a shock when they find out they won’t be getting it. This happened to Cox.
“I found out I wasn’t going to get my full Social Security benefits and Medicare would be taken out of that,” he said. “I got clobbered, and there’s many people in a worse situation than I am.”
Everyone deserves a secure retirement, especially those who
devoted their career to public service. The Windfall Elimination
Provision (WEP) and Government Pension Offset (GPO) threatens
that by substantially reducing or eliminating the
earnedSocial Security benefits of the
millions of retired teachers and public employees who contributed
to Social Security through other employment.
Political season is in full swing and, with days to go until California’s June 7 primary, CFT retirees are already looking ahead to the November 8 General Election.
“I can’t tell you how many people have told me they are mad as hell and ‘ready to do something’ because of the leaked Supreme Court ruling on abortion rights,” said Mike Nye at-large representative on the CFT Council of Retired Members.
Retired Berkeley Unified teacher Bonnie Cediel taught for 16
years. She was married for 34, but her partial CalSTRS pension
precludes her from receiving any Social Security spousal
benefits. The Government Pension Offset, (GPO) passed in 1977, is
Candidate Donald Trump told the American people he didn’t want to
cut Social Security, but Republicans have opposed the system
since its creation during the Depression.
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan has talked about “means testing”
Social Security. In other words, wealthy seniors wouldn’t get
benefits because they don’t need them. But they wouldn’t pay into
the system, either, and losing the top 10 percent of contributors
could lead to financial havoc.