At a given salary, the Social Security and retirement benefits are the same for both.
Not so the health plan. Here's the single plan and the family plan (local health plan):
Employer part Employee part
That's right, people on the family plan pay about $1600 for the extra person/people on the health plan (it's the same if you've got a single extra person or a number of extra people).
Our employer, though, pays an extra $11, 000. That's an untaxed benefit of $11,000 extra. Wow.
When we talk about benefits (say, in union discussions when we're fantasizing), folks with kids often complain that they should get free or subsidized tuition, or free childcare or after-school care (child care is subsidized on campus: 7am-5:30pm costs $40/day for up to 3 year olds, for faculty; it's cheaper for students, more expensive for community members).
Benefits are part of the costs to employers that they have to figure when they're employing someone, and so, in reality, we get less take-home pay because of our benefits. That's fine. At least, it's fine inasmuch as we all have access to benefits. It would be nice if we had more equal access.
But an extra $11K for family plan folks? I blame the patriarchy.
(And it's only very recently that same sex married folks could claim the untaxed benefit, though there was a time when same sex partner could get the benefit if they met all sorts of qualifiers that married folks didn't have to meet, but they had to pay taxes on it because they couldn't legally be married. I'm not sure how it works for unmarried partners now.)
It would be nice if I could get my hands on an extra $11k untaxed benefits. Maybe they could put more into my retirement? (Think how much faster that would add up!)
It's hard for me to think of another benefit that would be as helpful to a non-family benefitting person here.
(Yes, I realize I'm privileged to have a job, and I'm happy to pay my taxes, especially for schools, libraries, roads, social services, and such, happy to support subsidized childcare on campus. And I would be super duper happy if we'd move to a single-payer non-employer linked health insurance system!)