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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

May 3, 2013 at 7:02 AM

Social Security disability benefits

Not everyone takes advantage of the system

I was appalled by Froma Harrop’s column [“Free America’s ‘work beasts’ from disability scammers,” Opinion, April 26].

Let us be clear: This was nothing more than a naked attack on the safety net that Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) can provide. It’s an old tactic — take a small truth and enlarge it to encompass the entire network.

The small truth: There are some who do scam the SSDI system. This does not make that system bad or undesirable. This attack casts aspersions on anyone getting disability, insinuating that all who do are lazy good-for-nothings.

I am gratified to read letters of support for disabled workers from the likes of Ruth Kimball from Renton, David Warner from Seattle and Anna Kysar, also of Seattle. These people know and understand something fundamental: Disability is not an easy road for many, many people, and the stigma often attached to getting the needed help from the safety net makes it even worse. We cannot tolerate more stigmatizing. In fact, let’s call it what it is: bullying.

Philip Ryburn, Seattle

Harrop was not suggesting everyone takes advantage of the system

Ruth Kimball’s Northwest Voices letter indicts Froma Harrop for attempting to discredit the integrity of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) beneficiaries [“Disabled workers deserve more respect,” Northwest Voices, May 1].

What the opinion article suggests is stopping the disability scammers to ensure the long-term viability of SSDI, not attempting to abolish SSDI or paint all beneficiaries as scammers.

The letter even goes so far as to suggest the opinion author meet some Seattle claimants so she could see for herself that there are no SSDI disability scammers in Seattle.

Since the letter author makes her living defending such cases in court and in turn makes her living from such unfortunate people, I wonder if it wouldn’t be appropriate to ask her for a record of all the questionable cases she has turned down over the years to protect the integrity of SSDI?

David Cutler, Medina

Comments | More in Disabilities, Labor | Topics: disability, labor, Social Security

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