Rebecca Vallas Condemns Decades-Long Neglect of SSI Program

Rebecca Vallas (’09), Senior Fellow at The Century Foundation and Co-Director of the Disability Economic Justice Collaborative, was quoted on CNBC calling for critical updates to outdated asset and income limit rules impacting 8 million Supplemental Security Income beneficiaries (“Even with Two Checks in September, Supplemental Security Income Benefits Fall Short. Here’s How the Program Could Be Updated,” Aug. 28). As many of the rules haven’t changed since the program was created in 1972, Rebecca commented, “Forgetting about SSI for 40-plus years is the poster child of why, it is Exhibit A of why disabled people do not feel that their leaders in Washington care about them.” Rebecca was also quoted by NPR discussing the impact of SSI in exacerbating poverty and housing instability (“High Rents Outpace Federal Disability Payments, Leaving Many Homeless,” Sep. 15). “We are trapping people in a place where dignity is out of reach.” Rebecca also noted that “The program started with good intentions. It is hard for me to see this as anything but willful neglect.”