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Dundee LibDems back MP's calls for immediate action to restore link between pensions and earnings

December 16, 2008 10:07 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats
Cllr Helen Dick (LibDem - Strathmartine Ward - Dundee)

Dundee LibDem calls for immediate action to restore link between pensions and earnings

Dundee LibDems have today (Tuesday 16th December) expressed concern at new research revealing that pensioners are worse off now than in the 1950s.

LibDem MP Michael Moore has called upon the UK Government to take immediate action to restore the link between pensions and earnings. His call comes as research by his Scottish Liberal Democrat colleague Danny Alexander MP revealed that today's basic state pension is worth less relative to wages than it was in 1950.Michael Moore MP

In 1950 the basic state pension was worth 18.36% of average weekly wages. Today, however, it is worth only 15.79% of average wages.

The figures were revealed on the day the Government announced the value of benefits for 2009. Next year's basic state pension of £95.25 is worth only 16.6% of the average weekly wage in 2008.

Commenting, Mr Moore said, "These figures are a disgrace and Ministers should be ashamed. Not only has the value of the basic state pension fallen relative to wages over the course of this Labour Government, but the measures they have put in place to counteract this, such as pension credit, are over complicated and are failing to reach many pensioners.

"The Government should instead take immediate action to restore the link between pensions and earnings as a first step towards providing a decent state pension. Until this happens, millions of pensioners across the country will continue to struggle for survival on a pension that is wholly inadequate."

Here in Dundee, LibDem City Councillor for Strathmartine, Cllr Helen Dick, added, "The Labour Government has failed our senior citizens by reducing the worth of the basic state pension and making schemes like Pension Credit means-tested and overly complicated."

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