*****PAST FEATURES*****



Standing Up To Big Brown 


In May 2006, a Broward County Circuit Court jury in Florida found that United Parcel Service (UPS), the largest package delivery company in the world, had wrongfully terminated John Thigpen, a twenty-year delivery truck driver. Following a four-day trial, a jury awarded Mr. Thigpen nearly $6 million in damages finding that the delivery company had unlawfully retaliated against him for pursuing workers’ compensation benefits. 



Retirees on The Move





Once you decide to retire and escape the workplace, one of the first questions that comes to mind is should I relocate and if so to where?


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Loss of Dental Subsidies Launches Aetna Retirees into Action 

Created in the 1850s, Aetna has long been one of the leading insurance companies in America for the American people. In 1854, the Hartford-based company hired its first employee and by the end of the Civil War, was one of the nation’s leading life insurers... 


After Ma Bell’s Final Act 

When AT&T converted its Defined Pension Plan to a cash balance plan, it planted the seeds for a then fledgling retiree-advocacy organization.
 


Volunteerism and the Second Career

Victoria Thornton-Lucas had to do something. 
Over the course of several years, the former Coleco Industries employee and dietary aide had witnessed the downfall of her Brooklyn, New York neighborhood, which had become overcome with homelessness, drug addiction and HIV/AIDS.

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Medicare Prescription Drug Choices Due for Retirees in Fall 2005


Seniors receiving Medicare benefits who have prescription drug coverage through a former employer or union will begin getting letters as early as September that compare their current drug coverage to Medicare's. 


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Seniors to Celebrate Healthy Lifestyles 


During the week long celebration, seniors across the country will host local events to spread the word about the importance of healthy lifestyles. 

The event, which is coordinated by the federal Department of Health and Human Services, comes after the issuance of new dietary guidelines this past spring.




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The Living Will: Lessons From The Terri Schiavo Case/Draft Your Own Will


Terri Schiavo became a household name following court decisions that the Florida woman should be removed from life support despite objections from her parents and even President Bush. 




Age Discrimination Rules Apply to Healthcare Says Federal Judge

A federal judge this spring barred the government from allowing companies to exclude retiree healthcare plans from age discrimination rules. The federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) proposed change — which was rejected and that many retiree activist groups believed discriminated against some retirees— would have allowed companies to offer better healthcare packages to younger retirees than they give to older retirees. 


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Treasury Department Taps into Federal Employee Pension Plan to Avoid Default 


With the current national debt exceeding $8 trillion, U.S. treasury officials informed

Congress in February 2006 that they have been forced to suspend investments to the government’s retirement savings plan and instead draw down from the employee pension funds to avoid reaching the United States government’s national debt ceiling. 



Fixing Social Security: Privatization and the Alternatives 


The federal Social Security Administration has predicted that the current Social Securitysystem will start paying out more in benefits than it collects from taxes by the year 2018.


Heating up is the debate over just how to fix the over 60 year-old system. 


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When Good Retiree Healthcare Goes Away

During the national debate about 
healthcare reform many retirees took significant measures to let their voices be heard and the drumbeat continues. 









Doctors Say: Fish Food For Thought

The answer to keeping your brain functioning at full capacity well into old age may be as close as your local supermarket seafood counter.





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The Unplanned Parenthood


When relatives take on the full responsibility of a taking care of a child belonging to another family member it is not always easy - especially for grandparents taking on the role of caregiver to a grandchild or grandchildren.


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Back to The Grind With No Alternative

In a recent member poll by a national retiree
association,
approximately one-in-five respondents indicated that mounting expenses have forced them to go back to work to make ends meet.





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Wall Street Says Corporations Are Burdened by Legacy Healthcare Costs


The last few years have not been kind to America’s retirees. Recent years have seen the demise of several plans in the steel and airline industries. In 2004 United Airlines cast tens of thousands of its retirees into the welfare of the federal government run Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation, forcing pension reduction of up to 70% for some retirees.

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Report Says Medicare and Social Security Trusts Running on Empty

National concerns over the financial solvency of the nation’s two of the leading entitlement programs could once again be heightened with the annual release of the Trustees Report

on Medicare and Social Security. The reports, published on May 1, found that the Medicare hospital insurance trust fund could be exhausted by 2018, while the Social Security trust would be exhausted by 2040. 




I.B.M., General Motors and Verizon Freeze Pension Plans 


As a New Year’s surprise to its employees IBM, which operates the third-largest corporate pension fund in the United States, said it would freeze pension benefits and only offer employees a 401(k) retirement plan in the future. In February General Motors the world’s largest automaker said it planned to freeze its retiree pension program, and introduce a defined benefit plan or cash balance plan, as well as make other changes in its retirement program for future retirees. 


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Long-Term Care: More Than a Health Issue 


As the lifespan of the average American has lengthened, so too has the time people spend in retirement. Healthy retirees can realistically expect to spend 20 or even 30 years in retirement. This trend, coupled with the ever-rising cost of health care and nursing home care, can become a very significant factor in planning for a financially secure retirement. 


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What the Rule of 72 Says


The Rule of 72 is a finance building block anyone can use to help predict the way your cost of living will increase depending upon the rate of inflation or how your investments will grow depending upon their annual rate of return. This month we received a letter from a retiree in New Jersey speaking to its importance. We thought we would share excerpts of this letter and “The Rule of 72.”

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