Conclusion: fair pensions for all

Nearly one in five of us , living in the UK, is over the state retirement age.  A fair pension for all is affordable in the sixth largest economy in the world, if we choose it to be.

A pension is income deferred.  Whether it is through national insurance of contributions to an occupational scheme, we have set aside income today to pay for our pensions tomorrow.

We like to think of retirement as a time of relaxation and leisure, but for very many people it is a time of hardship and stress with a growing proportion having to choose between heating and eating.  Every winter tens of thousands of retired people die from cold-related illnesses.

We are all living longer and should welcome that life expectancy continues to improve, but those improvements have been very uneven, meaning that there is a huge life expectancy gap between the richest and poorest.  We must also consider the impact of working longer on unemployment, the impact that has on young workers staring off.  Youth unemployment is at the highest level on record.  Finally, we ought to acknowledge that longer retirements are not necessarily unaffordable, but are a question of priorities and balance.

The government is proposing little to tackle the scandal of private sector occupational pensions, or the poverty level of the basic state pension.  The government’s current attempts to cut public sector pensions will create more misery and more poverty in retirement.

6 Comments CherryPie on Nov 30th 2011

6 Responses to “Fair Pensions for All – Part Five”

  1. Claire says:

    I am very saddened at the state of this country today. The inequality, the great divide between rich and poor, the huge number of the unemployed,especially the young who have at the moment and for how long is unknown the inability to hope and plan for the future. I could continue but your post sums it up. Support the strike!

    • CherryPie says:

      It is very sad Claire, something has become unhinged along the way…

      For example the current proposals that require public sector workers to work longer before they can claim their pension means that young people have less opportunity for employment. There is something seriously wrong with that sort of thinking, the priority should be to think of ways to get young people into employment, not keeping older people working longer!!!

  2. Did you vote for Tories last year, C?
    I didn’t!

    I don’t trust them. :(

    • CherryPie says:

      I haven’t trusted any of the parties for a long time. I feel that their main interest is remaining office so they maintain power. We vote for our MPs to represent their constituency, what the people of their community think.

      I find that my MP of choice does largely represent my views and others in the community, which is quite refreshing.

  3. liz says:

    And they’ve cut the winter fuel allowance.