How Supplemental Security Income works

May 5, 2005


  • Robert A. Applebaum
  • Michael Payne
How Supplemental Security Works is a brief history and overview of the Supplemental Security Income program (SSI), the U.S. program that was designed as a safety net for elderly, blind, and disabled people who would otherwise fall through the cracks of other government programs. The article describes how SSI was instituted, and how it is both funded and administered. The article also provides SSI income/asset eligibility requirements and raises the question as to whether SSI benefits are enough to protect its recipients from poverty. (Published in Generations, vol. 29, no. 1, 27-29.)

Reprinted with permission from Generations, vol. 29, no. 1, pp 27-29, Spring 2005. Copyright© 2005 American Society on Aging, San Francisco, California.

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  • Personal Income/Financing