Taking Aim at Veterans’ Nest Eggs

Military veterans are frequently targeted by fraudsters, but perhaps the most insidious are self-described “veterans advocates” who take aim at retirement nest eggs. Some promise lump-sum cash payouts for veterans’ pensions and future benefits. But officials warn that those advances typically pay only pennies on the dollar of the pension’s actual worth and can carry loan shark-like interest rates (reports range up to 106 percent). Some charge hefty fees for services like filing pension or other claims or getting military …

No one-size-fits- all solution: The goal of pension sustainability is key

My pop was a Buffalo city bus driver for 25 years.  Just like millions of Americans – firefighters, nurses, teachers, and other public employees – Pop worked hard and counted on having his pension to help retire with confidence and dignity.  The long-term sustainability of today’s public pension programs is just as critical to millions of Americans. Today, I have encouraging news for public employees.  A new report, Significant Reforms to State Retirement Systems, issued by the National Association of …

How AARP Helped One Homeless Vet

John Cherry had no job, no money, no home. What he did have were debilitating health problems and drug and alcohol addictions. “I hit rock bottom,” says the 60-year-old Washington, D.C., resident. But a year later the Navy veteran is on a path lined with hope. Guided by the Legal Counsel for the Elderly (LCE), an affiliate of AARP, Cherry secured a $1,400 monthly pension he was entitled to through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs plus more than $12,000 …

How Is Your State Treating Its Firefighters, Nurses and Teachers?

My pop, a city bus driver, taught me to work hard and also have fun doing it. For more than 25 years, he announced each stop on his route as if he was leading a tour, not driving a Buffalo city bus. Pop retired at the mandatory age of 70. Mom and Pop lived on their Social Security, and Pop’s modest pension income was almost entirely dedicated to pay their health insurance premium. They enjoyed their retirement years, but I …

Pensions Are Promises. States Need to Keep Up Their End of the Deal

My Pop, a bus driver in Buffalo, worked until the mandatory retirement age of 70. He and my Mom lived on Social Security along with his modest pension. One Christmas, Pop couldn’t get into the spirit of the season. The next day, he confided that the next year health care premium increases would consume his entire pension check, and then some. I can only imagine how my parents’ lives would have been affected if Pop’s pension had been cut in …

Was Fired New York Times Editor Paid Less Than a Man?

It’s not just women toiling away in middle management or other low-profile positions who apparently are paid less than men. Jill Abramson, fired yesterday as executive editor of the New York Times – a position she had held since 2011 and the first woman ever in that spot – reportedly just weeks ago found out that her pay and pension benefits were much less than her male predecessor’s. She balked, and, according to the New Yorker, the pay gap was …