26th Annual Policy Research Conference
America’s retirement security compact is at a crossroads. Traditional work relationships are changing rapidly: compensation packages that include employer-financed pensions and retiree health benefits are disappearing; many workers are not seeing productivity gains reflected in their paychecks; unemployment and underemployment remain high; and 40% of Americans are living below 200% of the federal poverty level. In a volatile economy, some younger workers change jobs and workplace loyalties frequently; some older workers have employers who hope to keep them on the job past their planned retirement dates; other older workers are finding themselves out of work earlier than expected and have insufficient savings to last them through a long retirement. At the same time, critically important public programs — Social Security’s basic life, disability, and old-age insurance and the health security provided by Medicare and the Affordable Care Act — are facing major political and economic challenges that strain America’s web of retirement security.
Opportunities: Looking to the future, how will we choose to organize and finance both retirement security— that is, income, health coverage, and long-term services and supports — and employment security — including unemployment insurance and disability insurance — for workers and retirees? Will we find new ways to pool risks broadly to promote the common good and at the same time expand opportunities for individuals to save toward a secure retirement? How will we equitably pay for the effective and affordable economic and health security systems that Americans want? This conference will take a fresh and provocative look at key issues such as the role of labor and capital in undergirding retirement security, the urgent need to address economic inequality, and how to ensure that the public has a voice in shaping strategies to finance social insurance programs for present and future generations.
National Press Club
529 14th Street, NW
13th Floor Ballroom
Washington, DC 20045
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