ORLANDO, FL – A coalition of concerned local women and retirees joined together outside of Senator Marco Rubio’s Orlando office on Monday, asking the Senator to pledge to protect Social Security. Senator Rubio is on record saying that Social Security and Medicare have “weakened us as a people” and are “bankrupting this country” and he supports raising the retirement age.
“When we talk about Republican’s war on women, we aren’t just talking about reproductive rights or equal pay. This is about the ability of every woman to retire with dignity and financial stability. In 2012, Social Security lifted nearly 9 million women out of poverty. For those women and many others, Senator Rubio decision to gamble with Social Security is also a gamble on their survival,” said Terry Sanders, President of the Florida chapter of the National Organization for Women.
For women of color, the risks posed by Social Security cuts or privatization are even more serious.
“We know that women of color earn less on average throughout their lifetimes. This, coupled with the higher poverty rates that people of color experience, makes Social Security especially important for minority women,” said Beverlye Neal, State Director with the National Congress of Black Women. “Our livelihoods are at stake. We cannot afford to have Marco and his Republican colleagues put Social Security in the hands of private Wall Street investors.”
“This is our fourth attempt at reaching out to Senator Rubio to sign the pledge to expand, not cut social security. Social Security is an issue on voter’s minds as corporations eliminate traditional pensions, retirees who depend on the Social Security program to make ends meet are barely getting by and workers are worried about the financial safety of their future,” said Barbara DeVane, Florida Alliance for Retired Americans.
Representatives from the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans, and the Florida chapters of the National Organization for Women and the National Congress of Black Women joined local workers to call Rubio out for his failure to protect retired Americans.
The full text of the “Pledge To Protect Social Security” reads:
“More than 58 million Americans rely on Social Security checks earned through a lifetime of work. More than a retirement program, Social Security provides life insurance benefits to young survivors of deceased workers and disability insurance protection for workers and their families.
“I pledge to oppose every effort to privatize, cut benefits or raise the retirement age. I also pledge to expand Social Security so that every American can retire with dignity and respect.”