It's safe to say that without Social Security millions of senior citizens would be struggling to pay their bills during retirement.
According to January's Social Security snapshot from the Social Security Administration (SSA), the average retired worker was bringing home $1,363 per month. This works out to a little more than $16,300 per year. Though that may not sound like a lot, it's enough to demonstrably lower the estimated senior poverty rate per the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP). Estimates from the CBPP show that senior poverty rates with Social Security are just 8.8%, but they would be an estimated 40.5% without it. That's nearly a 32-percentage-point difference!
Unfortunately, America's most crucial social program is in trouble. The 2016 Social Security Board of Trustees report noted that the Social Security Trust would begin paying out more in benefits than it's receiving in revenue by 2020. What's more, by 2034 the program is projected to have exhausted its more than $2.8 trillion in spare cash.
To those unfamiliar with how Social Security's Trust is funded, it might appear that the program is working its way toward bankruptcy. In fact, roughly half of all millennials in a 2014 Pew Research Center survey believed that Social Security wouldn't be there for them when they retire.