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Volume 12 Issue 1 - May 2011

Social Security's Live Webinars: Viewer Questions Fielded On-the-Spot

On March 10, 2001, MRRC organized a viewing of the Social Security Administration webinar, Social Security 101: What’s in it for me? for staff at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research. The lively, upbeat tone of the webinar was directed at students and younger workers, but also addressed questions concerning older workers.

Brian Simpson, SSA Public Affairs Specialist, explained how Social Security works, what the FICA tax is, how to qualify for benefits, and the importance of saving and investing to adequately prepare for retirement. In the second half of the webinar, Mr. Simpson responded to on-the-spot audience questions submitted through an online feed or Twitter. Mayela Gillette from the Office of Open Government assisted by reading the questions posed by participants.

Since January 2009, the Social Security Administration has hosted interactive webinars on a variety of topics to inform the public about Social Security and disability benefits. The sidebar titled Social Security Webinars lists the current topics.

For National Mental Health Awareness Month, Social Security is presenting a webinar tailored to SSI and SSDI beneficiaries with a mental illness. Ticket to Work for Beneficiaries with a Mental Illness -- Support on Your Journey to Employment will be held on Wednesday, May 25, 2011 at 3:00 pm EST. The goal of the webinar is to provide information to help beneficiaries with a mental illness make informed decisions about going to work. Register early online at or by calling 866-968-7842 or 866-833-2967 (TDD).