Overview of Social Security Benefits

12 minutes

So, you are about to enter a new stage in your life that will focus on getting a job. It is really important that you know what your dreams are, that you know what kind of a life that you want. It's important for you to know these things because getting the right job can help you make those particular dreams come true. Under the federal government the Social Security Administration has two programs that provide different types of financial support to individuals with disabilities. The first is SSI, or Supplemental Security Income, and the second is SSDI, or Social Security Disability Insurance. Some people collect only SSI, while others collect only SSDI, and still others collect both. Some people feel content to collect Social Security benefits and to not work, and that may be ok for some people. However, there are still others who feel that collecting Social Security benefits and not working really limits them both in terms of their financial resources, as well as their experience. So you may want to really take the chance to think about that now while you are young. After all, you have goals, and you may not want these kinds of limitations placed upon you. It's definitely something to consider now while you are young. This video is of particular importance for you. I really want you to understand the benefits of working and how Social Security programs can help you on your path to getting the right job, so that your life can really take off. I want you to have a sense of being in control of your own life. SSDI and SSI benefits are there to support you in making your dreams come true; they're not there for you to simply sit back, collect, and do nothing. And I want you to learn more about the options that you have. I would now like to take the opportunity to talk with you about how a job offers you more options than just collecting SSI benefits. To begin, you can earn more money working than you can simply from collecting SSI benefits. And the more money that you earn will offer you additional choices in your life. Some of these choices may be owning your own home, or perhaps you'd like to purchase and drive a nice car. Maybe you have a dream of traveling, or perhaps you'd like to go on an all-deaf cruise. All of these choices may be part of the larger dream that you have for your life. Now that we've explored some of the financial incentives to work, let's look at another good reason for you to work, and that is to achieve your own personal independence. And I know for many of you, all the way through school on through graduating high school, you've been primarily dependent upon your parents to provide you with what you need, and that's common. But now is the time for you to decide if you want to continue being dependent on your parent's assistance or if you'd rather become independent. Maybe as part of your independence, you'd like to move into your own apartment so that you no longer have to follow your parent's curfew, and you can choose to come home to your own apartment whenever you choose. And if you want to become more independent, then you need to figure out how much money you'd need to earn in order to become more independent. And this will help you as you navigate your own life's journey. Another reason that you should work is the chance to learn new skills. At this point, you may have very limited work experience, and that's ok. But with every job, you'll increase your knowledge base, you'll strengthen your skills, and you'll improve upon your ability to interact with people. In addition, you'll learn critical problem solving skills for various situations that arise. And the more that you work, you'll begin to strengthen your job skills as well as your people skills which means your ability to work and to interact with people in a professional and courteous manner. You should know that sometimes to get the perfect job, you actually need to start at the bottom and then learn what you need to in order to work your way up to your ideal position. Another reason to work is that it can give you the chance to meet new people. Now it's likely that you will end up working and interacting with primarily hearing people on the job. And maybe this communication won't be as in depth as it is with your deaf peers, but it can be enjoyable and may be different than the familiar and comfortable interactions you have had with your deaf peers. Nonetheless, you'll be meeting new people and learning new things by interacting with both communities. It's also important for you to remember that the hearing community is enormous, especially compared to the deaf community. So, when you're out meeting hearing people on the job, those relationships can lead you to new information, to seeing new perspectives. And those new relationships, information, and new perspectives can lead you to new job opportunities. Another reason that you should work is because of what happens inside of you emotionally, and let me tell you what I mean. Some people have told me that they just feel good inside and feel good about themselves when they work and they interact with more people. I've also heard people say that when they work and interact with a number of people, they just are generally happier and more content with their lives. So maybe you do want to work. You think that would be a good thing for you. But maybe you've heard people say that if you do work, then your Social Security benefits, as well as health insurance, will stop--period--end of story. And I know that people worry; I do understand that. But if you do collect Social Security benefits but you don't feel entirely satisfied with only collecting those benefits and you want a job, the Social Security Administration has programs that will help you transition from just collecting benefits to working, and that is why we have these videos for you; so that you can start to understand the full picture, and you can make the right decisions for yourself.


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Why do people collect Social Security benefits? This segment focuses on the benefits of working and introduces the Social Security Administration programs that can help individuals find a job. Part of the "Getting a Job" series.

Media Details

Runtime: 12 minutes

Getting a Job
Episode 1
8 minutes
Grade Level: 9 - 12
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Viewer Comments

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    Anna C. (Cedar Falls, IA)
    December 13th, 2017 at 09:12 AM

    This video is an excellent overview of Social Security benefits. The ASL is presented clearly and in a way that is both informational and fun, even to moody high school students. I really like this series for my high school deaf students.