US facing a pension crisis

This letter is a wake-up call to anyone who is currently receiving a pension or is counting on one in the future. There is a pension crisis in this country, and too many people either don’t know about it or just believe that if they ignore it, it will go away. The only thing going away may be your pension if you don’t start paying attention and doing something about it.

Right now, about 10 million retirees and future retirees are facing some type of pension cut or loss because their fund is either underfunded or already bankrupt.

As a retired Teamster, I — along with many others — have been writing letters, making phone calls and attending meetings to try to address this problem. This is not only a Central States Pension Fund problem. Many municipal pension funds in Michigan and elsewhere are severely underfunded, along with the coal miners’ and others.

A lot of the problem can be blamed on the stock market crash but also on the crooked New York bankers who gambled with these funds and made bad investments and were then bailed out by us, the taxpayers. The problem is that when they got bailed out, they didn’t pay back any of the money they stole from the funds. They only made sure they didn’t lose anything.

A Joint Select Committee has been formed in Washington with the task of coming up with a solution that hopefully will not result in cuts to people’s pensions. If all these funds that are in trouble at some point stop paying benefits, the impact to the economy of the entire country will be disastrous. Not just to the retirees, but everyone.

You need to get involved, even if your pension fund is not in trouble, or even if you don’t have one. This will affect everyone, including your family and friends.

Please, call or write your senators and representatives and let them know they need to contact their colleagues on this committee and implore them to come up with a solution; one that will not bankrupt millions of your fellow citizens.