February Update from SOAR President Bill Pienta

Hoping 2022 is a Much Better Year for All of Us

Happy New Year to you all. I hope you are healthy and will remain that way for 2022. I thought I’d start off the New Year by sharing with you some information that will help put in perspective just how tough it is for most working Americans and retirees.

Workers are quitting their jobs, going on strike or attempting to organize at near-record levels. So, I decided to do a little research to find out why they may be so unhappy. Here is what I found, as of December 2021:

That leaves most families with $766.28 before taxes are deducted. Then, they still have to pay income taxes, utility bills, mortgages or rent, buy groceries and contribute to their 401K plan as most workers do not have pension plans. And that doesn’t include the cost for more than one child or any amount to cover medical deductibles or co-pays. And remember, these are just averages.

Now for retirees: The good news is that beginning in January, Social Security recipients will receive a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) that will increase the average monthly benefit to about $1,657, an average increase of $92 per month.

The bad news is our Medicare part B premium will increase to $170.10 per month.

The average cost of a Part D prescription drug plan will be $33 per month; and, if you have a Medicare Advantage plan, your costs will average $19 per month. Prices vary on these plans from $0 to over $100 per month.

Subtract these deductions, and the average Social Security recipient receives $1,434.90 per month. I have not included the medical co-pays and deductibles that further reduce this amount.

Needless to say, there are many struggles that we, as union retirees, are fortunate to be able to face together.

As a member of SOAR, I am looking forward to another year standing with you to build a better future for us all.

Hope to see you active and involved this year.

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