ICYMI: Senate Holds Keys to Greater Retirement Security for Americans Who Need Help Most

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December 13, 2019                                                                                                                                  (703) 641-8142 

ICYMI: Senate Holds Keys to Greater Retirement Security for Americans Who Need Help Most

AALU CEO pens op-ed on the importance of Senate passage of the SECURE Act

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Marc Cadin, CEO and President of AALU, one of the leading organizations representing financial security professionals, today published an op-ed urging the Senate to pass the SECURE Act by the end of the year. The legislation passed the House by a vote of 417-3 in May and has since been stalled in the Senate.

The SECURE Act would increase access to retirement plans for millions of workers, businesses, and families and reshape what retirement planning means for generations of Americans to come.

The full op-ed is available here or below:

The American dream of yester-year is fleeting. A golden age where an average worker could live comfortably, enjoy one or two vacations per year, and save enough money for retirement by age 65 is becoming more challenging than ever.

A Schwab survey revealed that 58 percent of people are relying on their 401(k) for retirement yet the saved median average income for working Americans is only $3,000—as reported by the National Institute on Retirement Security. Over the next 12 years, 10,000 people will reach age 65 every day. By 2050, the U.S. Census Bureau projects the population over the age of 90 will exceed 8 million Americans. The American public is in need of real solutions to secure their financial futures.

The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act would greatly aid Americans’ ability to save for retirement. Congress has an opportunity to pass legislation that would enhance the retirement savings landscape across the country and reshape what retirement planning means for generations of Americans going forward.

In May, the SECURE Act passed in the House by an overwhelming 417-3 bipartisan vote. However, the bill is now stalled in the Senate, with only two weeks left this year to get it done.

By enacting the SECURE Act, long-term, part-time employees will gain access to retirement plans that were previously not available to them. The bill also removes maximum age limits on retirement contributions and allows more small businesses to offer retirement plans, which will support more than 700,000 additional workers’ ability to save.

Beyond supporting the financial security of American workers, the legislation safeguards the survivor benefits of more than 18,000 Gold Star families. The SECURE Act also protects the defined contribution plans of 1,400 religiously affiliated organizations nationwide.

In addition, leaders from 91 organizations representing Americans across the nation signed a letter urging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) to get it done by the end of this year. Earlier this fall, seven Republicans senators wrote a letter to McConnell pressing for passage of the retirement legislation “as soon as possible,” saying, “Doing so would demonstrate to our constituents that the Senate can lead in a bipartisan way for workers saving for retirement, for tax fairness and for family financial security.”

Even with all these benefits, support across the country and the aisle, and a chance at the first major retirement overhaul in over a decade, politics has created an impasse in the Senate. Our country was built on a set of ideals that included the opportunity to achieve prosperity and success through hard work with few barriers. The pathway to be financially secure in your golden years is now on the line.

The looming retirement crisis is not a blue or red issue, it’s an American issue, and we can all agree the time is now to fulfill Americans’ right to a brighter financial future by passing the SECURE Act into law.

About AALU

Since 1957, AALU has been the leading organization of financial professionals who provide life insurance and retirement planning solutions for individuals, families, and businesses. AALU has a rich history of success with a single focus on the issues impacting life and annuity products, and the clients its members serve. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AALU is committed to providing its members with the essential tools and services required to help grow their businesses, serve their clients, and protect the financial and retirement security of the American people.