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November 1, 2016
Our Seniors Deserve Better
           Congressman Langevin at Hemlock Village in Foster

Dear Friends,

Next year, Social Security recipients will receive only a 0.3 percent increase in their monthly benefit check. For the average beneficiary, that’s just $5 more per month. So while it’s technically “more” than last year, when beneficiaries received no cost of living adjustment at all, it’s nothing compared to the rising costs our seniors are facing.

To put it simply: our seniors deserve better!

These men and women worked hard their entire lives, paid into the system, and now deserve the opportunity to age with dignity. Social Security is an essential safety net. Many of these seniors and people with disabilities are living on fixed incomes, and minuscule COLA increases put them under increased financial stress. It pains me to think about beneficiaries forgoing things they need – like medication, food, or oil to heat their homes – because they don’t have enough to get by.

Caring for seniors should be a bipartisan issue. I am a cosponsor of the Protecting and Preserving Social Security Act, which would base COLAs on the Consumer Price Index for the Elderly that more accurately depicts the cost of living for seniors and people with disabilities. Many of these individuals no longer drive, for example, so low gas prices have a nominal effect on their wallets. High prescription drug costs, on the other hand, take a toll.

This is just one of several reforms we must enact, both to better support our seniors and to ensure the solvency of Social Security. At the top of my to-do list is eliminating the payroll tax cap that benefits only the wealthiest Americans. Currently, any income above $118,500 is not taxed by Social Security. So an individual who earns $118,500 a year pays the same amount into Social Security as someone who makes millions. This is not fair, and eliminating this cap would go a long way toward making the system solvent. Privatization is not an option, and we can’t kick the can down the road. Our seniors are depending on us, and that’s a promise I believe we must keep.

Keep up with my efforts on Social Security and many other issues through Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.

            Sincerely,

           Rep. Langevin's Signature

University of Rhode Island Cybersecurity Symposium Logo
Cybersecurity Month
October was National Cyber Security Awareness Month and, as co-founder and co-chair of the Congressional Cybersecurity Caucus, an exciting time of year for me. I spoke about the importance of cybersecurity best practices with multiple groups, including CVS Health, the Rhode Island Joint Cyber Task Force, and the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce. Check out my op-ed in the Warwick Beacon to learn more about the role you can play in this effort.
 
Congressman Langevin at AstroNova in West Warwick
Made in Rhode Island
Manufacturing Day also falls in October, and it was an opportunity to highlight the exceptional manufacturing companies in our state, like Trans-Tex and AstroNova. In between visits, I joined Polaris MEP for a manufacturing roundtable with more than a dozen industry leaders. The need to close the skills gap was a common theme throughout the day, and the ideas I heard will help fuel my work as co-chair of the Congressional Career and Technical Education Caucus when I return to Washington.
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