President Obama has called for greater transparency in government. In response, Social Security has released its Open Government
plan, which you can read online at www. socialsecurity.gov/open.
The plan reflects Social Security’s commitment to expand opportunities for citizen participation and collaboration, and make open government more sustainable at Social Security. The agency is particularly proud of three flagship initiatives: a Spanish-Language Retirement Estimator, an Online Service Enhancement Initiative, and an Online Life-Expectancy Calculator. These three initiatives support the agency’s mission, goals, and objectives, and showcase the value of open government principles.
“I applaud President Obama’s commitment to opening the federal government to the people it serves and I am especially proud of the three flagship initiatives we have chosen to implement by the end of this year,” said Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security.
Social Security’s Spanish language Retirement Estimator will be the federal government’s first non- English interactive Internet application — a tool that furthers transparency by offering the Spanish-speaking public an opportunity to get instant, personalized estimates of future retirement benefits. Last year, more than three million people used the English-language version of this popular online service available at www.socialsecurity.gov/ estimator.
As part of its Online Service Enhancement initiative, Social Security will unveil a new service-channeling tool that will help people more easily find the information and services they seek on the agency’s website, www. socialsecurity.gov. A key feature will be the opportunity to go online to schedule an in-office appointment for those who are unable to use our online services to conduct all of their business.
The agency also is developing an Online Life- Expectancy Calculator —
a simple, but important tool to assist the public with retirement planning. Many people substantially underestimate their life expectancy. This new online service will add a measure of accuracy to retirement planning by providing average life expectancies at different ages based on the person’s gender and date of birth, and drawing on assumptions provided in the annual Social Security Trustees’ report.
“I look forward to continuing to translate the values of open government into lasting improvements in the way the agency makes decisions, solves problems, and addresses its challenges,” said Commissioner Astrue. “Social Security’s flagship initiatives will improve our services and further break down barriers between the American people and their government.”
We encourage you to read Social Security’s Open
plan at www. socialsecurity.gov/open.