Social Security Card
The U.S. government issues Social Security cards like this one to help identify workers and their contributions.
Graphic courtesy Social Security Administration
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On August 14, 1933, U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act. One of the few New Deal programs still enforced today, Social Security was meant to prevent widespread poverty among older adults, people with disabilities, and unemployed Americans.
Social Security is funded by payroll taxes. This means that almost all income and wages have a tax (usually called the Federal Insurance Contributions Act, or FICA) that goes into the Social Security Trust Fund. This fund provides assistance, such as supplemental income or medical care, to beneficiaries. Almost all Americans have a Social Security Number that tracks their contributions to the program over the course of their lifetime.
help or aid.
resource donated to a cause.
wages, salary, or amount of money earned.
(1933-1938) series of U.S. government programs intended to provide economic "relief, recovery, and reform" to Americans during the Great Depression.
status of having very little money or material goods.
to keep something from happening.
money or goods citizens provide to government in return for public services such as military protection.
affecting a large area or community.