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Brady urges support against pension discrimination

8 December, 2016 - by John Brady TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Social Protection John Brady TD has urged TDs to support the Dáil motion on pensions being voted on today.

Teachta Brady said:

“This motion is about fairness and equality. It is about fairness for those obliged to retire at 65 in accessing their State Pension as oppose to signing on for Jobseekers. It is about equality for women giving them an equal pension to men.

“During the debate on this motion yesterday evening, there was an acknowledgement across all parties that women are currently discriminated against when it comes to receiving a full State Pension. If TDs believe that this discrimination needs to end then this motion should be supported.

“There was also agreement that the current pension system is dysfunctional and needs a huge overhaul. I would therefore, call on the Department to postpone further increases in the State Pension age. The Government were not sufficiently prepared for the increase to 66 and they most definitely are not prepared for 67 and then 68. The pension age should not extend to 68 years unless done as part of an EU-wide initiative.

“The argument by Minister Varadkar that we cannot afford the proposals in this motion is not good enough nor is it true. In our alternative Budget this year, Sinn Féin included the restoration of pension band rates to their pre 2012 position at a cost of €50 million as well as the restoration of the Transitional State Pension at a cost of €78 million.

“The thousands of people particularly, women that have been impacted by changes to pension bands and rates made in 2012, the 47,000 women still paying the price for the marriage bar imposed on them and the 5,075 men and women forced onto Jobseekers on retirement will be watching this vote today.

“This motion is about fairness and equality for these people and the message sent out by this vote today will send a very clear message to these people.” 

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