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AARP ‘Take a Stand’ campaign hits the ground in Florida

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It’s a promise that’s been kept for generations. You pay into Social Security, you get the benefits you earned. But to keep that promise for future generations, Social Security needs to be updated for the 21st century. If our leaders don’t act, future retirees could lose up to $10,000 a year.

In late 2015, AARP launched Take a Stand, a national accountability campaign to push candidates for Federal office to take a stand on how they would update Social Security for our children and theirs. Since then, AARP leaders and volunteers have been working rigorously across the nation, urging our leaders to make Social Security a priority and to put serious proposals on the table. With the nation’s highest percentage of residents age 65-plus, Florida has a huge stake in the future of Social Security. On Wednesday, June 29, AARP officially opened its doors to three Take a Stand offices in St. Petersburg, Orlando and Broward.

“As a key battleground state, we know the candidates will spend a fair amount of time in Florida,” Leslie Spencer, AARP Associate State Director for Advocacy said. “Our Take a Stand offices will serve as a base for our staff, volunteers, and for all Floridians who want to ensure Social Security is around for each generation to come.”

Social Security is one of the most important programs in our nation, holding the health, happiness and well-being for people of all ages. As people become older and are living longer, they are more likely to outlive other forms of retirement income. The Social Security program not only provides monthly benefits to retired workers, but also to families when the worker retires, dies or becomes disabled. Without Social Security income, about 44 percent of the nation’s older population would be living in poverty, and in Florida, 46 percent of the state’s 65-plus population would have incomes below the poverty line if they did not receive Social Security. In addition, the program funnels more than $5.1 billion per month into Florida’s economy.

“More than 4.2 million Floridians receive Social Security benefits,” Lance Orchid, AARP Florida Take a Stand Field Director said, “and one in three older Floridians rely on these benefits as their only source of income. It’s important for our leaders to act now and act fast.”

AARP Florida Take a Stand staff and volunteers have already begun working diligently across the state, fighting to ensure that hard working Americans get the Social Security benefits they’ve earned. Every year our leaders wait and do nothing, finding a solution grows more difficult.

“For nearly 60 years, AARP has been fighting for Social Security, guided by our principles and our commitment to keep the promise for future generations,” Jeff Johnson, AARP Florida State Director said.  “With Take a Stand, we will keep fighting to make sure the next President has a plan to keep Social Security strong.”

For more information about Take a Stand, visit takeastand.aarp.org or join our campaign by signing up here.

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to either political campaigns or candidates. We produce AARP The Magazine, published bimonthly; the AARP Bulletin, our monthly newspaper; NRTA Live & Learn, our quarterly newsletter for 50 + educators; and our website, www.aarp.org. AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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