Tom Blenkinsop, Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, has today (9th December 2014) condemned the Tory-led Government for not being upfront over the latest pension changes.
Pensions minister Steve Webb announced last week that the basic pension state pension would rise by 2.5% – £2.85 a week more, but he also announced the Government was freezing the pension credit – additional money which tops up the income for those who have a small income.
As a result any pensioner aged 65 and above who earns between £120.35 and £190.35 will only get an extra 87p and couples who earn £192 and £278.25 between them will get just 60p a week more.
“Pensioners across Teesside and East Cleveland will be shocked to find out that they will get just an 87p rise in their state pension this April and not the £2.85 promised by the Tory-led Government. Many of these will be amongst the poorest pensioners, already struggling with the cost-of-living crisis, and who have saved all their lives for a little extra security in retirement. This Government seems to be punishing them for it. So if you are a pensioner and receive these benefits and believe you are one of the 1.6m who will only get an 87p increase please contact my office.
“The Government needed to be upfront and honest about how the changes are really impacting on the finances of pensioners. It’s been presented as if everyone wins, but that is not the case. The truth is that the Government is giving with one hand whilst taking with the other.”