Social Security recipients are expected to receive the largest cost-of-living adjustment in 40 years.
The adjustment, which will be announced on Thursday, is expected to be around 9 percent.
Coupled with a decline in the Medicare Part B premium, the Social Security boost will put more money in the hands of the 70 million Americans who receive benefits, including the growing number of grandparents caring for their grandchildren.
Seventy-year-old Cassandra Gentry is looking forward to a hefty cost-of-living increase in her Social Security benefits — not for herself but to pay for haircuts for her two grandchildren and put food on the table.
The three live in a Washington apartment building that houses 50 “grandfamilies” — where grandparents take care of children who do not have parents present.
Gentry, who took in her grandkids to keep them in a safe environment, says the boost in benefits will help her make ends meet.
“I never thought about contributing to Social Security when I was working, but now that’s what I depend on," the communications retiree said. “I depend on my Social Security to care for these kids."
It’s not just older people who will see an increase in their benefits. About 4 million children receive benefits, and an untold number of others also will be helped because they’re being cared for by Social Security beneficiaries, sometimes their grandparents.
The impact will be immense, especially for low-income retirees like Gentry, who feels the painful sting of high food and energy costs as she cares for a growing 12-year-old granddaughter and 16-year-old grandson. “They eat everything,” she joked.
She said the financial boost "is going to help us, and it's going to be a benefit because the cost of everything has gone up.”