Lufkin seniors say Social Security payments are too low

Opal Odom
Opal Odom

By Holley Nees - email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Opal Odom, 78, has worked for 62 years. She now worries she may have to go back.

"You either have to find a job, or you go into your savings and, like I said, it don't take long to break Fort Knox," Odom said.

For the second year in a row, monthly Social Security and supplemental security income benefits for millions of Americans will not increase next year.

"Last year it wasn't as bad, but two years in a row, it's definitely going to make a difference," said Robyn Hight, the Angelina County Senior Citizens' Center director.

She draws Social Security and says in their eyes, this decision is a slap in the face.

"It just seems so unfair," Hight said. "It's not like we're asking for something extra, it's just, and I don't believe in the word entitlement, but really we're entitled to it, they took it from us, we deserve it back."

The Social Security administration says there's been no cost of living increase since the last adjustment in 2008.

"The cost of living has gone up tremendously, look at your groceries, your gas, your clothing, everything and somebody is just not searching it out or just don't care," Hight said.

The senior center serves about 540 meals a day and most of those people are on Social Security. Hight worries without the increase, her seniors won't be able to make ends meet.

"It's really scary because I look at them and know that they depend on it," Hight said.

"It's already getting to the point that somebody is going to have to do something," Odom said.

Hight says they just want the money that they've worked their whole lives for.

"It's not extra money, it's needed money just to pay your regular bills," Hight said.

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