ERIC Number: ED197206
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1980-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Working Women, Marriage, and Retirement.
Lapkoff, Shelley; Fierst, Edith
Women are at a disadvantage under both Social Security and private employee pension plans because the retirement systems were set up at a time when most women were non-working spouses of employed men, a condition that no longer exists. Today women workers, divorcees, and widows of retirees often find themselves with inadequate retirement benefits because they have intermittent work histories due to being out of the labor force for years to bear and rear children and perform homemaking tasks. In some cases, women who have worked may receive less retirement income than wives of single-earner couples even though both couples have the same average monthly incomes. Other problems include those of divorced women who cannot collect pensions from their former husbands' retirement plans, low pensions because of women's generally lower wages, and loss of benefits by widows whose husbands did not take reduced pensions in order to provide survivor benefits. Proposals to reform Social Security include earning sharing, a double-decker system, inheritance of earnings credits, homemaker credits, and child care drop-out years. Proposals to change employee pension plans include options to increase survivor protection, earnings sharing of pensions for divorced spouses, and changes in employee pension plan provisions to provide commensurate pension benefits to short-service and low-wage workers or those who have interrupted careers or partial attachment to the labor force. (KC)
Descriptors: Adults, Change Strategies, Displaced Homemakers, Divorce, Economic Change, Employed Women, Employment Patterns, Females, Financial Problems, Labor Force Nonparticipants, Males, Marriage, Older Adults, Part Time Employment, Problems, Retirement Benefits, Sex Discrimination, Sex Fairness, Social Change, Spouses, Widowed
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: President's Commission on Pension Policy, Washington, DC.