State Pension Changes - Age UK's Response
Published on 14 January 2013 06:00 PM
In response to the statement on the changes to the state pension, Michelle Mitchell, Charity Director General at Age UK, said:
'The government's proposals for a single tier state pension above the level of pension credit are an important step forward for future pensioners. With millions not saving enough for retirement, a complete overhaul of our extremely complicated pensions system is long overdue.
'These reforms should go a long way to ensuring a fairer, simpler system which makes it easier for people to plan properly for retirement and particularly helps those on low incomes because of caring responsibilities or low pay.
'We look forward to seeing further detail about the impact on different groups when the draft bill is published shortly.
'These reforms mean tomorrow's pensioners will benefit from a better, fairer state pension system, but the needs of today's pensioners on low incomes, struggling with spiralling prices, must not be overlooked.
'If there is insufficient funding to extend the reforms to them at present, then the Government must find other ways to help.
'An ambitious national benefit take-up campaign could make a big difference and is the least they should do to help 1.7 million pensioners living in poverty.
'We do recognise that as life expectancy increases it is reasonable to consider extending working lives. But as we live in a country where healthy life expectancy varies so much, a simple rise in line with life expectancy would be unfair.
We are pleased the Government has taken on board our concerns and any rise in state pension age will be informed by an independent review.'
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Media contact: Vicky Smith
Tel: 020 3033 1444
Out of hours: 07071 243 243
For media enquiries relating to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland please contact the appropriate national office: Age Scotland on 0131 668 8055, Age Cymru on 029 2043 1562 and Age NI on 028 9024 5729.
Age UK is the new force combining Age Concern and Help the Aged, dedicated to improving later life.
We provide free information, advice and support to over six million people; commercial products and services to well over one million customers; and research and campaign on the issues that matter to people in later life. Our work focuses on five key areas: money matters, health and well being, home and care, work and training and leisure and lifestyle. We work with our national partners, Age Scotland, Age Cymru and Age NI (together the Age UK Family), our local Age UK partners in England and local Age Concerns. We also work internationally for people in later life as a member of the DEC and with our sister charity Help Age International.
Age UK is a charitable company limited by guarantee and registered in England (registered charity number 1128267 and company number 6825798). Age Concern England and Help the Aged (both registered charities), and their trading and other associated companies merged on the 1st April 2009. Together they have formed the Age UK Group ("we"). Charitable services are offered through Age UK and commercial products are offered by the Charity's trading companies, which donate their net profits to Age UK (the Charity).