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SSA Office Closures

More than 100 House of Representatives members recently wrote a letter that called on the White House to stop additional closures of Social Security Administration offices and to reopen those that have already closed.  They stated that more than 10,000 people become eligible to retire each day, and the need for these offices is not shrinking, it is growing.

The SSA has closed more than 120 offices, which is about one-tenth of the total offices, since 2000 and has reduced service hours at many of the remaining offices for reasons that include funding restrictions and a move toward providing services online rather than in-person.

The House members stated that even with increased online services, “there is no substitute for in-person assistance by trained and experienced Social Security employees.”  The number of in-person visits to field offices increased by 5 percent over the last two years.

In the letter, the House members added that if an office does need to be closed due to local circumstances, another one should be opened to serve the same population in a nearby location.  A group of Senators has also sent a letter to the SSA to make the same points.

A report released earlier this year found that wait times have increased in all ten SSA regions since 2010, as field office staff has dropped from a little over 29,000 to a little over 27,000 during the same time.