Age UK responds to new poverty (Household Below Average Income 2017/18) figures
Published on 28 March 2019 10:00 PM
Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK said: “We are deeply concerned that 2 million older people are now living below the poverty line - a 1% rise on last year that means pensioner poverty is at its worst since 2007/8.
“These new figures show that women, the oldest old and BME groups are at particular risk of poverty in later life and it’s important that more help is targeted to help them.
“Unfortunately two Government policy changes will undoubtedly make the position worse for the poorest older people: the ending of any Government funding for free TV licenses for over 75s from 2020, and the removal of the entitlement to pension credit for couples where one partner is above and the other below State Pension Age in a few weeks time.
“On the back of these worrying figures we call on the Government to do more to ensure everyone has a decent retirement income and reversing these two proposed policy shifts would be a very good start.
“We also need to keep in mind that as much as £3.5bn in financial help is going unclaimed by older people every year when this extra money could make a real difference to their everyday lives. We would urge any older person with money worries to contact Age UK by calling our free advice line on 0800 169 6565 or visit www.ageuk.org.uk for information and advice.”