Social Security Administration Heeds Casey, Brown Request, Puts End To Proposal That Sought To Monitor Americans' Social Media Accounts

Senators Wrote Letter Earlier This Year, Following NY Times Story on White House Proposal to Monitor Social Media Activities of Americans who Claim Disability Benefits

WASHINGTON, DC – This week, U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Bob Casey (D-PA) announced that the Trump Administration heeded their request and put an end to their invasive and controversial proposal that sought to monitor and follow the social media accounts of Americans who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits.

“The proposal to monitor people with disabilities through social media is a horrible precedent,” Senator Casey said. “I am pleased that the Social Security Administration ended consideration of this proposal, and I will continue my work to advocate for the disability community. People with disabilities deserve to enjoy life without fear of losing their SSDI benefits.”

“People with disabilities should be able to experience the joys of life without fear of losing their SSDI benefits because of moments they post on social media,” said Senator Brown. “I’m glad the Trump administration listened to Senator Casey’s and my concerns and put a stop to this invasive proposal.”

In March, following a New York Times report that outlined this proposal, the Senators penned a letter to raise several questions about the proposal related to the privacy of American citizens, the already limited resources available to Social Security Administration (SSA) workers, and plans to increase the scope of the social media monitoring program.

In April, following a vague explanation from the Trump Administration regarding this proposal, the Senators continued pushing for answers and greater transparency.

This week, the SSA wrote to Sens. Casey and Brown saying it did not plan to pursue the policy after all.

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