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By the end of the 1930s, however, the personal popularity of the president, the lure of federal dollars, and the pressures of addressing unemployment and poverty had induced all states to adopt unemployment compensation and old age assistance, and most of them to adopt the rest of the state-aid programs in the Social Security Act.
Mary Poole offers public historians, social historians, social scientists, social workers, and students of policymaking a detailed reading of primary sources by those men and women instrumental in shaping and enacting the first four programs of the 1935 Social Security Act--Grants to States for Old Age Assistance (Title I), Federal Old-Age Benefits (Title II), Grants to States for Unemployment Compensation Administration (Title III), and Grants to States for Aid to Dependent Children (Title IV).
A most important innovation in the Kerr-Mills Act was to extend medical benefits to a new category generally known as the medically indigent--persons age 65 or over, not receiving old age assistance cash payments, but whose incomes would be ".
Other reimbursements include amounts received by a taxpayer from (1) social security and state old age assistance in his capacity as his dependent mother's guardian;(36) (2) his brothers for his mother who was a dependent under a multiple support agreement;(37) and (3) his aunt's pension.
Factors contributing to the decline in participation include wider coverage of the labor force by social security, the extension of old age assistance to persons sixty-two to sixty-four years old, the greater availability f social security and other types of disability payments, the greater prevalence of pension plans, the provision of early retirement benefits in many pension plans, and efforts by employers to cut back payrolls by inducing early retirement.
Two cash assistance programs for the elderly, created by the 1935 Social Security Act, became instrumental in inducing widespread retirement: Old Age Insurance and Old Age Assistance (later substantially federalized under the Supplemental Security Income program in 1972).
Lieberman hardly mentions old age assistance, yet it was the most popular of all the programs created by the Social Security and, between 1935 and 1951, the most important as well.
Old Age Assistance under the Social Security Act of 1935 enabled people to pay for more services at home.