Washington, DC - Patrick Yoes, National President of the Fraternal Order of Police, welcomed the news that H.R. 82, the “Social Security Fairness Act,” is now cosponsored by a majority of the Members of the U.S. House of Representatives. As of this morning, the legislation has 223 cosponsors. The Senate bill, S. 1302, has 34 cosponsors—more than a third of that body.
“This is a very important milestone for the more than 364,000 members of the FOP and this bill,” Yoes said. “We’re continuing to work with lawmakers in both the House and the Senate to further increase support for this legislation in Congress.”
This legislation is a top legislative priority for the FOP, which waged an intense campaign to achieve this legislative milestone. In 2019, the FOP released an informational video aimed at law enforcement officers, other public employees, and policymakers explaining the impact of the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and the Government Pension Offset (GPO). The WEP affects workers who spent some time in jobs not covered by Social Security and who also worked other jobs where they paid Social Security taxes long enough to qualify for retirement benefits. Like the WEP, the GPO may reduce the benefit received by surviving spouses if these spouses also receive a surviving spousal benefit from a public pension.
“The WEP and GPO provisions do not eliminate a windfall for workers. It is a loss of the benefits they earned and are denied because they also served the public and have a pension from that work. That’s not right and it’s not fair,” Yoes said. “The FOP has been working with members of our Public Safety Working Group on Social Security Fairness to urge Congress to repeal these inequitable provisions and pass the ‘Social Security Fairness Act.’”